262422 Improving primary care access in underserved communities through cross-sector collaboration on workforce development

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 10:30 AM - 10:50 AM

Stephen Holloway, BS, MPH (c) , Primary Care Office, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Denver, CO
Amber Galloway Stephens, BA , Primary Care Office, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Denver, CO
The equitable distribution of primary care resources is an important mitigator of health disparities, particularly those associated with poverty and geographic isolation. State Primary Care Offices are an important contributor to the evaluation of clinical safety-net sufficiency and primary care workforce capacity. Primary Care Offices also play an important role in administering workforce incentive programs, which encourage primary, oral and mental health professionals to care for medically vulnerable, uninsured and publicly insured people. Between July of 2009 and December of 2011, the Colorado Health Service Corps loan repayment program expanded from 11 providers and $220,000 in annual funding to 189 providers and $3.6 million in annual funding. Early evaluation findings suggest that the program has both substantially improved access to care in Health Professional Shortage Areas and is achieving sustained workforce capacity improvements in underserved communities. This session will describe the steps the Colorado Primary Care Office took to expand and enhance this important health professional workforce program including the enactment of state legislation, formation of new relationships between public health and community based clinics, strengthening of partnerships with non-governmental stakeholders, and the successful appeal for philanthropic investment. This session will describe the development of policies which distinguish the Colorado program from federal loan repayment programs and the use of best practices to target applicant selection towards the attributes of long-term retention in underserved communities. Finally, this session will review plans to engage Corps providers in community based public health interventions emphasizing the social determinants of health.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Program planning
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines

Learning Objectives:
Describe the policy, legal, collaborative, and philanthropic steps needed to build a robust state level primary care workforce incentive program. Identify the individual provider characteristics that lead to long-term service retention in underserved communities.

Keywords: Access to Health Care, Workforce

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been the program director of the Colorado Health Service Corps since its inception (December 2006). I have been principally responsible for the initiation of legislation, program policy development, grant development and evaluation. I also launched the Colorado Health Service Corps program in July of 2009.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

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