Student Choice of Family Medicine, Incentives for Increasing

The AAFP calls on entities including, but not limited to medical schools, state governments, the federal government, and private firms to develop and support programs and incentives that encourage student career choice of family medicine. In doing so, the AAFP recognizes the multifaceted and complex factors leading to specialty choice. These programs and incentives could be financial, educational, institutional, or political in nature. They include, but are not limited to:

Financial

1.   Financial incentives, including scholarship programs and tuition waivers for students who commit to family medicine, medical student educational loan forgiveness programs, and low-interest loan programs for family medicine residents and practicing physicians.

Pipeline

2.   Innovative educational programs for students from elementary school through medical school that provide age-appropriate mentoring and experiential learning.

Family Physicians as Mentors

3.   Resources, support, and training for physician-mentors and faculty to include financial and professional incentives for community-based family physician preceptors.
4.   Enhance medical school leadership development that prepares family physicians to be leaders in team-based primary care.
5.   Support the development of medical school family medicine alumni networks that serve as clinical training sites for medical students.

Medical School

6.   Medical School admissions policies that recognize and value attributes found in successful primary care clinicians, and include family medicine faculty interviewers on the admission committee.
7.   LCME standards that require family medicine education early in medical school training.
8.   GME modernization proposals that protect and expand funding for family medicine residencies.
9.   Highlight the global medicine opportunities within family medicine.
10.  Promotion of model medical school curricula, governance and programming that lead to increased choice of family medicine.
11.  Widespread enhanced support for family physician preceptors.
12.  National health policy expectations for production of family medicine residents by medical schools.
13.  A family medicine department at all medical schools.
14.  Investing in and supporting medical school pathway/pipeline programs for students interested in underserved populations.
15.  Investing in family medicine interest groups.

Advocacy and Leadership

16.  Preservation of full scope family medicine training and practice opportunities.
17.  Payment reforms that appropriately values payment for primary care services.
18.  Innovative research for primary care at all levels including quality improvement, comparative effectiveness, translational, and community-based participatory research.
19.  State and federal policies that selectively value a primary care based physician workforce.
20.  Expand exposure and opportunities to highlight family medicine's unique position and involvement in public health and advocacy efforts.
21.  Define and clarify the role of family medicine as a distinct and unique specialty within primary care.
22.  Early premedical and medical school exposure to family medicine.

(2006) (May 2016 BOD)