"Geriatrics is a specialty that never should have happened"

LETTER — Posted Sept. 19, 2005

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Regarding "Gearing up for a graying America: The need for geriatricians" (Article, July 4): This has to be the most irrelevant feature article I have read in some time. Geriatrics is a specialty that never should have happened.

Family physicians and internists are more than adequately trained for the task. In 15 years of family medicine, I had no less than 50 nursing home patients at any time and I have several patients older than 100; plus thousands of ambulatory seniors. Why do I need another "specialist" carving their niche out of my practice?

Already my care and prescribing is under constant review and critique by the state of Iowa, Medicare, and numerous third-party payers. How much more expertise is required?

Brian W. Meeker, DO, Vinton, Iowa

Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2005/09/19/edlt0919.htm.

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