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Use of cooperative health statistics system physician data in small area manpower needs assessment: the case of rural Colorado.
  • Published Date:
    1982 Jan-Feb
  • Source:
    Public Health Rep. 97(1):78-83
  • Language:
Filetype[PDF-929.22 KB]

  • Alternative Title:
    Public Health Rep
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  • Description:
    Maldistribution with respect of medical practice location and specialty continues to present barriers to quality care for many Americans. Residents of rural communities in Colorado often lack access to health care services appropriate in number and nature to their needs. A valid determination of the severity of inaccessibility of medical care is a prerequisite to effective programming for alleviating the problem. Any such needs assessment must be predicated on the use of a reliable, detailed physician manpower data base. Physician data used in evaluating the adequacy of health care delivery systems serving small or sparsely populated rural areas have traditionally proved inadequate, causing loss of credibility in the findings derived from those efforts. A concerted attempt was made in rural Colorado to establish a physician inventory for identifying health manpower shortage areas and assessing the degree of medical underservice. This undertaking was organized and directed by staff members of the Statewide Educational Activities for Rural Colorado's Health (SEARCH) program, the area health education center program of the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. Cooperative Health Statistics Systems (CHSS) physician data, collected in an annual survey conducted by the Colorado Department of Health, were determined to be exceptionally accurate in describing the physician manpower practicing in the State's federally designated medically underserved counties. CHSS proved to be an outstanding source of physician data upon which small area manpower needs assessment can be based for the purpose of designating medically underserved or health manpower shortage areas.

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