There are currently an estimated 134,800 family practitioners in the United States. The family practitioner job market is expected to grow by 14.3% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are family practitioners?

CareerExplorer rates family practitioners with a B- employability rating, meaning this career should provide good employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 20,400 family practitioners. That number is based on 19,300 additional family practitioners, and the retirement of 1,100 existing family practitioners.

Are family practitioners in demand?

Family practitioners will always be needed. Without family physicians, medical care becomes fragmented, leading to greater chances of medication errors and potential for unnecessary treatment, hospitalization, and expenses. In many ways, these physicians are the backbone of medicine, especially in rural areas where other medical specialists are less common than in urban settings. The trend toward medical students choosing to specialize in sub-disciplines other than family practice suggests that there will be a shortage of these doctors over the next decade. In fact, some medical schools are increasing their enrolments on the basis of higher demand for family practitioners. The falling number of family physicians in the U.S. comes as more Americans can pay for treatment and are flocking to healthcare providers due to the Affordable Care Act. Therefore, competition for jobs in family practice is predicted to be less intense than in many other specialties. Overall competition in the medical field is tempered by the fact that it takes a long time – usually twelve to sixteen years – for aspiring doctors to complete their education and enter into practice. Employment prospects are projected to be best for family physicians that are willing to practice in rural and low-income areas, which typically have difficulty attracting physicians. Geographically, southern states are severely lacking and have a great need for family practitioners. Texas, Oklahoma, Georgia, Arkansas, Alabama, and Mississippi not only have low numbers of primary care doctors, but they have high rates of obesity, hypertension, and other chronic conditions related to heart disease. In short, opportunities for family physicians will be plentiful, as it is these practitioners who sustain wholeness and unity in medical care.

What’s the supply of family practitioners?

The family practitioner industry is concentrated in California, Florida, Illinois

Family Practitioner job market by state

State Name Employed Family Practitioners
California 13,950
Florida 12,710
Illinois 9,160
Texas 7,910
Missouri 5,280
Pennsylvania 5,070
Michigan 4,860
Virginia 4,530
Ohio 3,960
Georgia 3,820
Colorado 3,580
Massachusetts 3,250
Arizona 3,150
Minnesota 3,020
North Carolina 2,740
South Carolina 2,670
Wisconsin 2,420
Maryland 2,360
New York 2,190
Indiana 1,920
Iowa 1,840
New Jersey 1,750
Nebraska 1,680
Utah 1,600
Kentucky 1,530
Arkansas 1,300
Washington 1,200
Tennessee 1,120
Idaho 1,060
Louisiana 1,040
Oregon 990
Connecticut 990
Mississippi 950
New Hampshire 910
New Mexico 790
Maine 690
Kansas 680
Nevada 670
Alabama 660
Puerto Rico 530
South Dakota 490
Hawaii 480
Alaska 450
Delaware 440
Vermont 370
Montana 350
North Dakota 350
Wyoming 260
District of Columbia 230
Rhode Island 190
West Virginia 110
Guam 50