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Robert Graham Center Unveils Medical School Mapper
Free Tool Emphasizes Role of Medical Schools in Workforce Distribution
By News Staff
The free Med School Mapper tool can be used to identify counties in which a school's graduates currently practice, the number of physicians in each county who have graduated from a particular school, medical schools that provide the most graduates to each county, and the percentage of graduates who are practicing in rural or underserved areas.
"In short, this application was built to help state policymakers, legislators, and education and health care workforce planners better understand how each school currently contributes to their local area, to communities in greatest need and to the specialties at the greatest risk of shortage."
Bazemore stressed that understanding the role of medical schools in meeting each state's need for physicians is crucial to allocating federal and state resources for medical training. Although multiple studies demonstrate that patients with access to primary care demonstrate improved health outcomes and decreased costs, 30 percent of Americans report having trouble gaining access to primary care physicians. Meanwhile, physician workforce studies predict a shortage of at least 35,000 primary care physicians by 2020.
"One of the ideas behind the Med School Mapper is to identify medical schools that are particularly prone to producing graduates in areas of high societal need," said Bazemore. "Primary care is one of those areas of high need."
The Robert Graham Center developed the Med School Mapper in conjunction with Health Landscape LLC and with financial support from the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation. The mapper itself is based on the AMA Physician Masterfile and utilizes geographic information systems software.
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