Which Training Programs Produce Rural Physicians? A National Health Workforce Study

Research center:
Lead researcher:
Project funded:
September 2004
Project completed:
November 2007
This national study is using comprehensive, longitudinal data on medical school specialty and practice location choice to determine the extent to which the nation's medical schools and residency programs vary in their production of rural physicians. This information will be used to identify the medical school and residency training characteristics that result in the highest yield of rural physicians. This project updates and builds on previous WWAMI RHRC studies by including elements not previously available: the type and location of residency training, a more sophisticated method for defining rurality, and a new approach to determining physician supply at the level of the Primary Care Service Area.

The project will show variation by medical schools in the number and proportion of their graduates who practice in rural areas, identify how this production varies by residency type, compare the production of rural physicians between osteopathic and allopathic schools, examine the comparative production of male and female physicians within and across medical schools, and compare these findings with those from our 1992 project. The Final Report for this project is under review, and will soon be available on the WWAMI RHRC website.