Primary Care Physician Migration Patterns and Their Implications for Workforce Distribution

Published in: Journal of General Internal Medicine, Volume 34, pages 1108–1109 (2019). doi: 10.1007/s11606-019-04872-4

Posted on RAND.org on February 12, 2021

by Ryan Kandrack, Grant R. Martsolf, Rachel O. Reid, Mark W. Friedberg

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Primary care physicians are not optimally distributed within the USA, necessitating programs like the National Health Services Corps, which give physicians financial incentives to relocate to Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs). The outcomes of such relocation incentives might depend on physicians' existing migration patterns. Previous research has found that over a 5-year period, 20–25% of physicians move from one county to another. However, these studies did not examine the migration rate for office-based primary care physicians in particular. We sought to describe recent primary care physician migration patterns.

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