Supply of Healthcare Providers in Relation to County Socioeconomic and Health Status
Non-physician clinicians now constitute nearly one-quarter of the US primary care workforce, and as such are expected to play a significant role in offsetting projected physician shortfalls.1,2 It has long been recognized that the per capita availability of physicians varies substantially across regions,3 and that physicians tend to locate in more affluent locales rather than areas of greatest need.4 Less is known about the practice location of non-physician clinicians and whether they exhibit similar patterns to those of physicians. Therefore, we examined the relationship of nurse practitioner and physician assistant supply with local socioeconomic and health status. As an example of a healthcare profession that operates outside the traditional medical system, 80% of whom operate as small business owners, we also examined the distribution of US chiropractors.
To identify active providers, we linked providers listed in the 2014 National Plan and Provider...
This work was supported by the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Medicine at the National Institutes of Health under award number R01AT009003.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
All authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
- 1.US Health Resource & Services Administration. Projecting the Supply and Demand for Primary Care Practitioners through 2020. Available at: https://bhw.hrsa.gov/health-workforce-analysis/primary-care-2020. Accessed 15 Sept 2017.