Office of MS Physician Workforce
The Office of Mississippi Physician Workforce (OMPW) was established by House Bill 317 that was signed into law by Gov. Phil Bryant on April 24, 2012. The bill, introduced by Rep. Sam Mims, created an office within the University of Mississippi Medical Center for the purpose of overseeing the physician workforce development and needs, both in numbers and distribution, for the state of Mississippi. Initiated by the Mississippi Academy of Family Physicians, the introduction of such legislation was supported by the Mississippi State Medical Association and the University of Mississippi Medical Center.
On signing the legislation, Gov. Bryant said, “Tuesday, I signed legislation that furthers my health care initiates. In my inaugural address, I explained the need for Mississippi to add 1,000 physicians to its workforce by the year 2025. Expanding our state’s medical residency programs will directly increase the number of physicians who remain in Mississippi to practice. We know that new doctors generate about $2 million in economic impact in their communities, and more doctors means better health care for our citizens. Rep. Sam Mims should be commended for his work on this important legislation.”
As one of the most medically-underserved states in the country, Mississippi has the lowest per-capita primary care physician supply in the nation. In 2012, the state had 8.3 doctors per 10,000 Mississippi residents, compared to the national average of 12.8 physicians per 10,000. Mississippi must add 1,330 primary care physicians to its workforce to raise this number to the national average.
The Office of Mississippi Physician Workforce, with its 17-member advisory board, oversees physician workforce development needs by:
– Supporting the creation of accredited family medicine residency programs in the state, including awarding the state financial support for creation of these programs;
– Encouraging the development of an adequate and geographically distributed physician workforce in ll specialties with an evolving strategic plan;
– Assessing the current numbers, ages types of practice, hospital affiliations and geographic distribution of physicians in each medical society in Mississippi;
– Assessing the current and future physician workforce needs of Mississippi.