|UNC receives grant to develop web-based model to track doctor shortages|
|Tuesday, July 12, 2011|
The Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has received a $750,000 grant from the Physicians Foundation to develop a online tool to track ongoing physician workforce needs across the country.
The foundation is a nonprofit organization that seeks to advance the work of practicing physicians and improve the quality of healthcare for all Americans.
“Most experts agree the nation is facing a shortage of doctors, but we don’t know how many, in what specialties and in which geographies we’ll fall short,” said Erin P. Fraher, Ph.D., who heads the project at the UNC Sheps Center. “This model represents an important step in fostering quality health-care delivery to all patients across America.”
“Our nation already faces a severe deficit of physicians,” said Dr. Alan Plummer, Physicians Foundation board member and chair of the grants committee. “The impending flood of new patients reinforces the critical need for timely and reliable data that illustrate the physician supply needs across the U.S. This tool will further enhance our ability to identify where physicians are most needed to support our patients and growing health-care system.”
The project will utilize data from a wide variety of sources, including the American Medical Association and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Once the data is assembled, UNC, the Physicians Foundation and a clinical advisory group — comprised of practicing physicians — will work collaboratively to develop a model that enables users to estimate physician supply and demand within a set geography and/or specialty. Additionally, users will be able to incorporate multiple scenarios to evaluate physician workforce needs and the sensitivity of projections impacted by policy changes. The web-based projection model will be continually updated with new data.
The Physicians Foundation contact: Rachael Adler, (917) 595-3038,