Recruitment and Retention of Community Health Center Primary Care Physicians post MA Health Care Reform: 2008 vs. 2013 Physician Surveys

Monday, August 1, 2016
Cover of Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved
Warren J. Ferguson, MD
Commonwealth Medicine
Laura Sefton , MPP
University of Massachusetts Medical School
Joan Pernice, RN, MS
Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers

An examination of the choices that primary care physicians make in deciding to practice in a community health center (CHC) post health care reform. Researchers compared results of physician surveys conducted in 2008 and 2013. Primary care physicians working at 46 Massachusetts CHCs in October 2013 answered a 170-question survey. The results indicate that primary care physicians rate a CHC's mission as one of the most important factors in deciding whether to join the practice. In addition, a statistically significant gain from 80 to 87 percent of PCPs in 2013 reported feeling "prepared" to work with underserved populations. A statistically significant gain was also seen in language competency with nearly 73 percent of PCPs reporting speaking at least one non-English language sufficient to conduct a patient history and physical exam.