U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has announced the allocation of $250 million to increase the number of healthcare providers and strengthen the primary care workforce. The investments make up the first half of the new $500 million Prevention and Public Health fund for fiscal year 2010, created by the Affordable Care Act.
The investments are being made in response to a projected shortage of primary care providers in the near future—The Association of American Medical Colleges has estimated a deficiency of approximately 21,000 in 2015—and are built on earlier funding made available through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, and the Affordable Care Act. They will support the training and development of more than 16,000 new primary care providers over the next five years.
Sebelius was joined for the announcement by U.S. Representative Lois Capps, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Administrator Dr. Mary Wakefield, and HHS Assistant Secretary for Health Dr. Howard K. Koh.