Tuesday, August 12, 2008

National Association of Community Health Centers

The NACHC released it's report on the primary care workforce yesterday. Not surprisingly, they continue to report primary care shortages. What I did find surprising, is that the non-physician workforce is equally short-staffed and may pose as much of a challenge in the coming years.
"To reach 30 million patients by 2015, health centers need up to 19,500 primary care providers and up to 14,400 nurses. Just over one third of the needed workforce is non-physician primary health care professionals."

Regarding the situation in Massachusetts, where mandatory coverage has further strained the primary community, the NACHC reports:

"One year after Massachusetts began its widely-touted health insurance mandate, the rate of uninsured adults dropped from 13% to 7%, yet the proportion of adults reporting that they could not find a primary care physician and therefore went without care rose 75%. "

Clearly, universal coverage does not equate to universal access.

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