AFP DEPARTMENT COLLECTION

Graham Center Policy One-Pagers

These reports offer succinct summaries of research and perspectives pertinent to family practice advocacy and are produced by the Robert Graham Center: Policy Studies in Family Medicine and Primary Care in Washington, DC.

Jul 1, 2020 Issue
Family Physicians Play Key Role in Bridging the Gap in Access to Opioid Use Disorder Treatment
Buprenorphine prescribing in primary care is a key bottleneck in the access to medications for opioid use disorder (OUD). In a Medicare claims study including family medicine, internal medicine, general practice, and psychiatry, the largest share of buprenorphine prescribers were family physicians.


Jan 1, 2020 Issue
A Shrinking Primary Care Workforce in Puerto Rico
In 2018, two-thirds of primary care physicians in Puerto Rico were older than 55 years, compared with 43% nationwide. Meanwhile, only four out of every 10 graduates of family medicine residencies from 2011 to 2017 remained on the island in 2018, placing Puerto Rico’s new family physician retention rate among the lowest in the nation.


Aug 15, 2019 Issue
Proportional Erosion of the Primary Care Physician Workforce Has Continued Since 2010
We estimate that 217,208 primary care physicians provided direct patient care in the United States in 2018. This represents an even lower percentage (30%) of the total U.S. physician cohort than the 2010 Council on Graduate Medical Education's (COGME's) recommendation to increase primary care to 40% of the overall physician workforce.


Jun 15, 2019 Issue
Ensuring Primary Care Access in States with an Aging Family Physician Workforce
In many states, at least 40% of family physicians are older than 55. Therefore, policymakers should support broad training models that produce enough primary care physicians to meet state population needs.


Feb 1, 2019 Issue
Increased Quantity but Not Proportion: U.S. Medical Schools and Family Medicine Entry 2008 to 2018
Expansion in the number of American medical schools since 2005 led to an absolute increase in graduates matching into family medicine (FM) residency programs from 2008 to 2018. Proportionally, however, FM training has become increasingly reliant on osteopathic physicians and U.S. citizens trained at international medical schools (U.S. international medical graduates).


Aug 1, 2018 Issue
High Demand, Low Supply: Health Centers and the Recruitment of Family Physicians
Expansion of the Health Centers Program has been associated with persistent workforce challenges for this critical component of the primary care safety net. In a national survey, 69% of health centers had a family physician (FP) vacancy. Those with FP vacancies reported spending an average of 11.4 months recruiting for an FP, one of the longest recruiting periods for a clinical position.


Jun 15, 2017 Issue
Family Physicians Practicing High-Volume Obstetric Care Have Recently Dropped by One-Half
Previous research has shown a decline in the percentage of family physicians practicing low- or medium-volume obstetrics. Using 13 years of data through 2016, we found continued declines in low- and medium-volume obstetrics, in addition to a new 50% decrease in family physicians providing high-volume obstetrics.


Nov 1, 2016 Issue
High-Deductible Plans May Reduce Ambulatory Care Use
Although rates of uninsured Americans are declining because of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), there is growing concern about out-of-pocket expenditures associated with private high-deductible insurance plans.


Oct 1, 2016 Issue
Rural Opioid Use Disorder Treatment Depends on Family Physicians
The nation's growing opioid use disorder epidemic disproportionately impacts rural areas, where physicians who can prescribe buprenorphine are scarcest. Among physicians approved to prescribe buprenorphine, family physicians (FPs) are the most likely to work in rural areas.


Sep 1, 2016 Issue
Family Medicine: An Underutilized Resource in Addressing the Opioid Epidemic?
Opioid overdose rates have tripled since 2000, and although overprescribing of opioids by physicians is widely accepted as a causal factor, the physician's role in providing medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder is less appreciated. Despite a clear willingness to prescribe opioids, few family physicians (FPs) have the necessary certification to treat opioid use disorder with buprenorphine, an effective, evidence-based treatment.


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