Despite Specialist Shortage, Rural Hospital Makes Gains
While many large, urban hospitals are struggling to recruit physicians, the relatively small, 64-bed Hanford Community Medical Center recently has recruited 10 new physicians, more than half of whom are specialists, the Fresno Bee reports.
Central San Joaquin Valley is experiencing a chronic physician shortage, especially of specialists. The Valley has 50% fewer specialists per capita than the rest of the state.
"It's particularly challenging for the rural areas and smaller facilities," Debby Rogers, vice president of quality and emergency services for the California Hospital Association, said, adding that it is often a lifestyle choice or change for the physicians who move to the smaller facilities.
However, Community Medical Centers recently has made progress in attracting more specialists because of its affiliation with UC-San Francisco's medical education program in Fresno (Correa, Fresno Bee, 10/2).