Alaska 2015-2016 Primary Care Needs Assessment
The Alaska Primary Care Office (PCO) within the
Division of Public Health partnered with other key stakeholders to
conduct a statewide Primary Care Needs Assessment. The purpose is to
provide a robust point-in-time assessment and baseline of Alaska’s
primary care system in order to identify gaps and to help plan and
project for the future of primary care delivery. For purposes of this
assessment, behavioral health and dental services were also included.
The needs assessment is a requirement of the Health Resources and
Services Administration (HRSA) Primary Care Office Cooperative
This project was supported by the following:
- Department of Health and Social Services/Division Public Health/Sections of:
- Health Planning and Systems Development;
- Women’s, Children’s and Family Health;
- Public Health Nursing;
- Chronic Disease and Health Promotion;
- Alaska Primary Care Association;
- Denali Commission.
Alaska Primary Care Programs
Address health care access and workforce disparities that exist in Alaska through the expansion of new access points, the support of existing health centers, coordination of health professional shortage area designations, coordination of loan repayment programs, and regular updating of statewide primary care needs assessment and sharing of data.
The Primary Care Office funding is used to:
- enhance and support the current and emerging community health centers to focus on the primary health care delivery system in frontier communities;
- support and strengthen the health care provider system;
- leverage much needed resources to other frontier communities with small populations and high needs, and without access to basic health care at a local level; and
- maintain current primary care needs assessment and ensure that data is accessible.
The Primary Care Office’s goals include:
- Technical Assistance to Organizations/Communities Wishing to Expand Access to Primary Care for Underserved Populations, which incorporates the following:
- coordination of the National Health Service Corps Program (NHSC);
- Provider Recruitment and Retention;
- collaboration in Health Center Planning and Development;
- collaboration with other Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA) Partners and Organizations to Support Access to Primary Care Services.
- Primary Care Needs Assessment; to Analyze Unmet Need, Disparities and Health Workforce Issues
- Shortage Designation Coordination including developing applications for Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) and Medically Underserved Areas (MUA) and Medically Underserved Populations (MUP).
- Assessment of Primary Care Needs: Publish/ Update a Primary Care Needs Assessment and Plan — see Alaska Health Care Data Book
- Workforce Development: Collaborate with partners to identify and use opportunities for expanded training, recruitment and retention of health care providers for Alaska.
- Manage Alaska State Loan Repayment Program
- Health Center Growth Initiative: Provide technical assistance and support to community Primary Care programs that apply for Community Health Center (CHC 330) funding
- HPSA/MUA/P designation (Health Professional Shortage Areas/Medically Underserved Areas/Populations): Continued identification and assessment of underserved populations and areas of Alaska where individuals lack access to health care
- Community Development: Assist communities, organizations and providers by providing technical assistance focused on developing solutions that increase access to health care. Provide information and technical assistance to communities that are intending to apply for federal community health center funding (CHC 330).
State Health Care Environment, 2015
Recent developments in access to primary care in Alaska through new community health centers, identifying Alaska’s safety net of heath care providers, Patient Centered Medical Home, primary care in Community Behavioral Health Centers, workforce development, plus related topics and useful links – see State Health Care Environment.
Susan Mason-Bouterse, Program Manager
Main Office Number: (907) 465-3091
Fax: (907) 465-6861