This was successfully posted to your pofile.
This box will close automatically in a few seconds. Close this window
We don't have an e-mail address on file for you. To use AAFP Connection, you must have an e-mail address in our records. Click Here
Building Primary Care Workforce, Boosting Pay Go Hand in Hand, Says COGME
AAFP President Welcomes Report's Support for Academy Goals
By Barbara Bein
AAFP President Roland Goertz, M.D., M.B.A., of Waco, Texas, told AAFP News Now he is pleased that another entity in Washington is backing changes similar to those the Academy has been promoting for years.
"I'm enthusiastic that there are more voices from entities that have been given responsibility on these issues, and they have similar recommendations to make on payment and workforce reforms," he said.
AAFP Has Resources to Build Pipeline to Family Medicine
For premedical students, Explore Family Medicine: A Roadmap for Your Future, (20-page PDF; About PDFs) offers a bird's eye view of what it means to become a family physician and what to expect along the way. There's also a resource list to help those considering a career in medicine, as well as information on managing medical school debt.
For medical students, there are mentoring resources; information for minority students; and Strolling Through the Match, (68-page PDF; About PDFs) a primer on the National Resident Matching Program.
Residents-to-be also can learn how to research and select residency programs and get advice on transitioning to residency.
Five Challenge Areas Identified
- the number of primary care physicians,
- mechanisms of primary care physician payment and practice transformation,
- the premedical and medical school environment,
- the GME environment, and
- the geographic and socioeconomic maldistribution of physicians.
In addition to recommending income increases to boost interest in primary care, the report offers a number of recommendations for medical schools. Among them are that medical schools should develop accountable mission statements and reform their admissions processes to favor students who are more likely to go into primary care.
FPs Active in Developing COGME Report
Russell Robertson, M.D., professor and chair of the department of family and community medicine at the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, is currently the council's chair. He will become vice president of medical affairs at the Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, North Chicago, Ill., and dean of its Chicago Medical School effective March 1.
The COGME vice chair at the time was Robert Phillips Jr., M.D., M.S.P.H., director of the AAFP's Robert Graham Center in Washington, D.C.
Other family physicians who helped develop the report are Joseph Hobbs, M.D., professor and chair of the department of family medicine and senior associate dean for primary care and community affairs of the School of Medicine at the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta, and Jerry Kruse, M.D., M.S.P.H., professor and chair of the department of family and community medicine of Southern Illinois University School of Medicine in Springfield.
Changes Could Happen Quickly
He cited as examples selective increases in primary care Medicare payments, financial support for quality improvements focused on primary care functions, and support for the patient-centered medical home, or PCMH.
In addition, said Phillips, modifying medical school admissions criteria to favor students who are more likely to go into primary care could happen quickly. Other measures that could be implemented swiftly are creating accountability measures for GME that take primary care production into account, increasing Title VII funding and creating more incentives for optimal physician distribution.
These options "could happen in the next Congress or by action of the administration," he said. In fact, some of these recommendations already are being addressed in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
However, Phillips said, reducing the income gap remains the most important recommendation for family physicians, and the mechanisms for doing so -- increases in fee-for-service, bundled payments, and financial rewards for care coordination and improvements in meeting performance measures -- move physician practices toward the PCMH model of care.
Graham Center Forum Underscores Physician Supply, Distribution Challenges
Health Care Reform Law Provides Boost for NHSC, Teaching Health Centers
Health Care Reform Law Calls for Reassigning Residency Slots to Benefit Primary Care
Mission-driven Physicians More Likely to Practice Among Urban Underserved, Study Finds
Medical Schools Can Target Such Applicants for Admission, Says FP Investigator
More From AAFP
Policy on Family Physician Workforce Reform