Our Health Systems Development shop just got a new workforce recruitment and retention grant from the National Health Service Corps to improve the number of healthcare providers that practice where we have shortages (technically called underserved areas). The Corps offers medical, dental, and behavioral health providers the opportunity to repay their student loan debts in exchange for serving Arizona’s underserved communities for a period of time. Up to $60K in loan repayment is available for providers who commit to serve for two years- or up to $170K if they sign up for 5 years. There’s also a scholarship program. Visit http://nhsc.hrsa.gov/ for more information on the National Health Service Corp Loan Repayment Programs or contact Ana Roscetti, Workforce Program Manager at Ana.Lyn.Roscetti@azdhs.gov.
Posts Tagged ‘underserved areas’
I’ve written often over the last few weeks about our priority over the next couple of years to better integrate primary healthcare and psychiatric care in AZ, and that last week HHS approved the Health Homes Planning Grant which will focus on improving coordination of care and increasing access to primary care and prevention services, resulting in meaningful improvements in quality of life and health status.
Making integration happen effectively will take coordination among numerous parts of the Department (much like the work that was required for medical marijuana). We’ll need to coordinate updated IT and business needs as well as public health prevention and licensing, and of course behavioral health. Licensing will be an especially important partner because our medical and behavioral health licensing teams inspect AZ treatment facilities.
One of the challenges that we’ve been facing as we begin our integration efforts is that the licensing rules for medical and behavioral health facilities sometimes make integration more difficult than it needs to be, and one of our goals over the coming months is to overhaul our administrative code (rules) for behavioral health facilities. In the mean time, our offices of Medical and Behavioral Health Licensing has been working very closely with a number of our service providers in the central, eastern and southern areas of the state to ease the licensing process as Arizona embraces integrative health care. Presently, there are a series of projects under construction that we anticipate will be looking to license this summer.
As part of our overall planning for the implementation of integrative health care, we’ve been connecting with prospective licensees to provide technical assistance, concentrating on architectural requirements and rule and service delivery. By taking a proactive stance with licensees, we can cut down on additional visits to the site to navigate compliance at a later date. That way, providers can start meeting the needs of their community in underserved areas.