Nearly $26 million has been awarded in California for innovative, community-based training programs to increase primary care and psychiatry residents in underserved communities.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), announced the funding on July 1, providing $25,920,000 for 19 awards for teaching health centers that operate primary care medical and dental residency programs that include high need specialties such as psychiatry. The funds were made available as part of the ‘Unity Agenda’ to address the nation’s mental health crisis.
These awards – supported by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 and Fiscal Year 2022 funds – come at a significant moment when the nation’s health care workforce is facing challenges, as recently highlighted in the Surgeon General’s Advisory Addressing Health Worker Burnout.
“Having access to primary care and mental health support is essential to one’s health and well-being,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “Increasing the number of primary care residents training in community health centers and other outpatient community clinics is a key part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s plan to address longstanding health inequities in our most vulnerable communities. We will continue to expand the primary care workforce supply line to help meet community needs.”
HRSA’s Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education program focuses on supporting residents in primary care residency training programs to meet the medical and mental health care needs of rural and underserved communities. It represents an important step toward increasing much-needed access to quality health care services.
“We are leading the effort to build a stronger primary care and mental health workforce to meet the needs of historically underserved communities by supporting primary care training programs that include psychiatry,” said HRSA Administrator Carole Johnson. “The American Rescue Plan has been a game-changer for growing this critical program and helping us build a workforce that best reflects and serves the communities that need these resources the most.”
Previous HRSA investments under the American Rescue Plan are supporting the planning and development of even more teaching health center primary care residency programs.
A list of award recipients can be viewed at: https://bhw.hrsa.gov/funding/apply-grant/teaching-health-center-graduate-medical-education/ay2022-2023-awardees.