NCMS Steps Up with Help for Clinicians Serving Rural Areas

Because Congress has not yet re-authorized funding for the National Health Service Corps (NHSC), some clinicians who agreed to work in underserved areas in exchange for educational loan repayment through the Corps have not received their loan repayment checks. To help ensure these physicians, PAs, nurse practitioners and other clinicians can continue serving their patients, the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) Foundation is stepping up to fill this financial gap.

The NCMS’ Vice President for Rural Health Systems Innovation, Franklin Walker, MBA, currently is reviewing five applications requesting funds to provide gap funding for NHSC recipients who are not receiving funds. The help would be for one year or until NHSC funding is renewed. Walker oversees the NCMS Foundation’s longstanding Community Practitioner Program, which also offers educational loan repayment for health care professionals who practice in underserved areas. Helping those who are part of the NHSC is on top of the regular funding for the CPP participants.

The NCMS Foundation’s contributions were mentioned in a recent North Carolina Health Care News article, which stated that currently there are 237 people in North Carolina receiving loan repayment from the NHSC. More than 100 of those people work in community health centers across the state.

Funding for the NHSC was extended through March thanks to Congress’ continuing resolution passed in December, but some of the NHSC participants in North Carolina did not receive their checks in November.

“Our mission is to improve access to care in our underserved communities. So, when we saw this unfortunate funding situation with the National Health Service Corps, we felt obligated to help these clinicians so they can continue the important work they do in their communities,” Walker said. “Of course, our first commitment is to our CPP participants, but however we can help the Service Corps folks, we will try to do so.”

Your charitable contributions to the NCMS Foundation fund programs like CPP and to expand access to quality health care to patients in rural and underserved areas. Learn more about our NCMS Foundation and how you can help.

 
 

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