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Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science

Lynchburg Journal of Medical Science

Specialty

Family medicine

Advisor

Elyse Watkins, DHSc, PA-C, DFAAPA

Abstract

There is a shortage of primary care providers due to high burnout rates, low compensation, and less prestige received compared to other specialties. Due to less attention to mental health, decreased funding from the government, and the unmet needs of community mental health clinics, there is an increase in suicide rates. The medical cost in the U.S. is high due to overtreatment, fraud, and for-profit systems. The solution to improving access to medical care includes improving the work environment for primary care providers and mental health providers. Offering more comprehensive psychiatry training, aggressive screening of mental disorders, and reforming the current revenue system can be helpful. Also, recruiting more physician assistants (PAs) and nurse practitioners (NPs) can play a major role in health care reform.

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