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HANYS Opposes Proposal to Merge Health Professional Shortage Areas and Medically Under-served Areas

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HANYS has weighed in against a proposal that would combine the Medically Under-served Area/Population (MUA/P) and Health Professional Shortage Area (HPSA) designations into one combined designation. HANYS’ concern is that it is not clear how the allocation of resources will change under the designation system outlined in the proposed rule.

Providers with HPSA and MUA designation are eligible for federal programs and benefits related to serving under-served communities. Under the proposal, the number of eligible areas would decrease and there is insufficient information on impacts relating to the allocation of resources. HANYS believes adoption of this rule should be postponed until there is fuller understanding of its implications and the linkage to benefit programs is better defined.

HANYS contracted with the State University of New York School of Public Health, Center for Health Workforce Studies to analyze the impact of the proposed rule on HPSAs and MUAs/Ps. The analysis has found that using the proposed methodology, 16% of existing HPSAs would lose their designation and 15% of existing MUAs/Ps would lose theirs.

HANYS sent a letter yesterday to the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) opposing a proposed rule. – Sherry Chorost

Published May 30, 2008