The Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education (GME) program is a $230 million, five-year initiative created by the Affordable Care Act to increase the number of primary care residents and dentists trained in community-based settings. The Teaching Health Center GME program in instrumental in increasing access to health care services for people who are geographically isolated, economically or medically vulnerable.
Teaching Health Center GME funding pays for direct and indirect medical education expenses for training residents in new or expanding community-based primary care residency programs. Clinical training sites include federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) and FQHC Look-Alikes, community mental health centers, rural health clinics, Indian Health Service or Tribal clinics, and Title X clinics (family planning clinics).
Teaching Health Centers are located in a variety of settings, including urban, rural and Tribal communities, and serve populations such as veterans and their families, minority communities, older adults, children and adolescents. Seventy-five percent of Teaching Health Centers are Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) or FQHC Look-Alikes, serving underserved communities.
To be eligible to apply to the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education program, an entity must be
A Graduate Medical Education consortium collaborating with a health center and hospital in operating one or more primary care GME programs may also be eligible.
Teaching Health Center primary care residency programs include family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, psychiatry, geriatrics and general and pediatric dentistry.
The number of Teaching Health Center GME programs has significantly increased each year, enabling the number of resident full-time equivalents and total residents trained to more than double each year.
During the 2014-2015 academic year, 60 Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education programs in 24 states will support more than 550 residents.
The Teaching Health Center GME program and the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) both help build healthy communities by supporting qualified health care providers dedicated to working in underserved areas of the U.S. As of September 2013, there are 139 NHSC clinicians working at Teaching Health Center GME clinical training sites.
Physicians trained in health centers are more than three times as likely to work in a health center and more than twice as likely to work in an underserved area as those not trained at health centers.