MEDIA ADVISORY: National Expert in Rural Health Workforce Studies To Discuss Rural Physician Shortage

WHAT: By 2025, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) predicts a national shortage of 124,000 physicians. Even with a recommended 30 percent increase in medical school enrollment, physicians will not be able to keep pace with an increasing population of aging patients. For patients in rural areas especially, timely access to care could continue to be a problem for years to come.

Ed Salsburg, founding director of the AAMC Center for Workforce Studies and a national leader in this field, will discuss the current state of the rural workforce as well as predictions for the future during his presentation to rural health educators as part of a meeting of the National Rural Health Association at the MU School of Medicine. Rural health leaders from across the nation and beyond will attend.

Before joining the AAMC, Salsberg was executive director of the Center for Health Workforce Studies at the School of Public Health at the University at Albany of the State University of New York. He has authored and co-authored many reports on the health workforce and is a frequent national speaker.

Beginning in 1995 with a grant awarded by the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration, the MU-Area Health Education Center (AHEC) is now also supported by state and local funds. The center’s goal is to improve the supply and distribution of health care providers, particularly primary care providers, in underserved areas of Missouri. AHEC regional offices are located in Rolla, Macon, Poplar Bluff, Springfield, St. Joseph, St. Louis and Kansas City, and more than 100 rural physicians across the state serve as community preceptors, hosting MU medical students at their practices through AHEC’s rural track clerkship program.

WHEN: 1 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 25, 2010

WHERE: University of Missouri School of Medicine Russell D. and Mary B. Shelden Clinical Simulation Center

NOTE: Media should contact the MU School of Medicine Office of Communications at (573) 884-7541 or (573) 884-0298 for accommodations.