The US Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has released a list of Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) slated for removal. Each year HRSA adds and reduces HPSAs based on the result of survey data from providers that determines how many are located in different counties compared to the population of those counties.
HPSAs are designated for shortages of primary care, dental or mental health professionals in certain geographic areas, population groups and/or facilities. The lists of designated HPSAs are reviewed, revised and published annually on the HRSA Data Warehouse shortage area topic web page.
The most recent pull of HPSAs “proposed for withdrawal” is staggering compered to previous years. And this is not just for Alabama. More than 15% of primary care and 8% of mental health HPSAs nationwide are slated for withdrawal
Simply put, the removal of the HPSA designation and the loss of the federal funds that is allows in our state will have a large impact on providers. This will affect not only enhanced 10% bonus to physicians who provide Medicare service in these areas, but it will also affect National Health Service Corps, Nurse Corp program, and J-1 Visa Waiver programs.
Click here to view the full report of HPSAs slated proposed for withdrawal.
We are closely watching this situation and are working with the Alabama Department of Health to see what can be done about this situation.