Texas Hospitals Look Forward to Training More Physicians to Care for Texans
(Austin – Feb. 25, 2016) – Twenty-three Texas medical schools, hospitals and health systems have been awarded $49.2 million in grants from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to support the expansion of graduate medical education opportunities in Texas. The funds support 65 training programs and 224 residency positions in 2016 and 459 positions in 2017.
The Texas Hospital Association worked with hospitals and legislators to secure the state’s GME investment, highlighting the tremendous unmet need for services in communities across Texas.
Grant funds are part of a $50 million general revenue appropriation from the 84th Texas Legislature to boost funding for GME in Texas and increase the number of physicians to care for Texans. Senate Bill 18 consolidated the state’s GME expansion initiative under a single statute with grants available to support the maintenance and creation of residency positions at existing and new GME programs.
“These funds are much needed to address the state’s serious physician shortage and the access difficulties it creates for residents across the state,” said Ted Shaw, THA president/CEO. “SB 18 and the general revenue appropriation are an indication of the state’s commitment to educating future physicians to care for our growing population. Sustaining and building this investment will be essential in future years.”
Texas has the fastest growing population in the nation but a lower-than-average physician to population ratio. Among the most severe shortages are those for primary care physicians, endocrinologists, psychiatrists, geriatricians and pediatric subspecialists.
Retaining in-state medical school graduates and residents is the most effective way to increase the number of physicians in Texas. Eighty percent of Texas medical school graduates who complete their residencies in Texas stay here to practice medicine. In the absence of additional first-year positions, graduates of Texas medical schools have to leave the state for residency training, and chances diminish they will return to Texas to practice medicine.
Grant awards were made according to three funding priorities:
- 32 programs are funded to increase the number of first-year residency positions in primary care specialties;
- 26 programs are funded to support positions previously funded in FY 2014 and 2015 under the Unfilled Position Grants Program, Grants for New and Expanded Programs and the Resident Physician Expansion Program; and
- Seven programs are funded to increase the number of first-year residency positions in psychiatry.
The grant funds maintain support for positions funded in FY14-FY15 at $65,000/position/year and for newly filled positions in FY16-FY17 at $75,000/position/year.
The GME grantees are:
- Baptist Health System, San Antonio
- Bay Area Medical Center, Corpus Christi
- Baylor College of Medicine, Houston and San Antonio
- Baylor University Medical Center, Dallas
- CHRISTUS Health, San Antonio and Corpus Christi
- DeTar Healthcare, Victoria
- Doctors Hospital at Renaissance, Edinburg
- Houston Methodist Hospital, Houston
- John Peter Smith Hospital, Fort Worth
- Laredo Medical Center, Laredo
- Scott & White Hospital, Round Rock
- Texas Institute for GME & Research
- Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock, Amarillo and Permian Basin
- Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center at El Paso, El Paso
- Texoma Medical Center, Denison
- The University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School, Austin
- The University of Texas Health Sciences Center at Houston
- The University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio
- The University of Texas Health Sciences Center at Tyler
- The University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston
- The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Harlingen, Edinburg and Westlaco
- The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas
- University of North Texas Health Sciences Center, Fort Worth