Elevating the Safety Net was prompted by a growing physician shortage that threatens L.A. Care members. A UC San Francisco study found that California faces a shortage of 8,800 primary care physicians by 2030. Low-income areas which are dependent on the safety net are especially vulnerable.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Hospital already reports a shortfall of 500 primary care physicians and 700 specialists. The Department of Health and Human Services recommends at least 60 primary care physicians per 100,000 people, with 80 being preferable, but the number is just 56 in L.A. County.
As part of our mission to provide access to quality health care and protect the safety net, the L.A. Care Board of Governors committed up to $31 million for the initiative, which will expand in the coming years. Each new physician could treat up to 2,000 new patients in L.A. County.
July 19, 2018 Launch Event
L.A. Care held a launch event and "white coat" ceremony to announce Elevating the Safety Net and to honor the eight students who were the first to receive full medical school scholarships.
The launch of Elevating the Safety Net received widespread media coverage. Take a look at some of these stories that echo the importance of the effort to end the physician shortage.
- HealthLeaders Media: L.A. Care Launches $31M Physician Recruiting Initiative
- FierceHealthcare: L.A. Care Health Plan is Committing $31M to Recruit Primary Care Doctors
- Bloomberg Law: California Safety-Net Health Plan Offers Doctor-Shortage Solution
- KMEX/Univision 34: Scholarships to Study Medicine
- L.A. Chamber of Commerce: Another Health Crisis – The Growing Physician Shortage: A Health Plan Takes Action
To read more stories, visit L.A. Care's Latest News.