The News Journal recently featured an Op-Ed by DHA President & CEO Wayne Smith that discusses the national primary care provider shortage and the challenges Delaware faces with primary care access in many areas of our state.
Underscoring this truth is a recent report from Kaiser Health News stating that “the percentage of primary care positions filled by fourth-year medical students was the lowest on record” in this year’s National Resident Matching Program. That means less primary care providers in the pipeline. Our rapidly aging population (Delaware is the seventh oldest state in the nation) will only increase demand for medical services, including primary care, in the future.
Important steps are being taken to improve primary care access in Delaware through value-based contracting, more hospital-based residency and medical education programs, and advancing a medical student loan repayment program like that described in House Bill 257.
Delaware’s hospitals and health systems are taking major steps to support primary care in Delaware and are fully invested in each of the three above initiatives. For more on these efforts, please read the full Op-Ed, Delaware is hurting for primary care doctors, but there's a solution at the following link: https://www.delawareonline.com/story/opinion/contributors/2019/08/28/heres-how-delaware-can-get-more-primary-care-doctors-opinion/2122517001/.