University of Arizona Primary Care Physician Scholarship Program – Tucson and Phoenix

University of Arizona Primary Care Physician Scholarship Program – Tucson and Phoenix


[MUSIC PLAYING] In urban areas of Arizona,
there are about 80 primary care physicians per
100,000 population. In some of the small
rural towns in Arizona, that figure drops to 10 primary
care physicians per 100,000. The University of
Arizona has really been a thought leader on
how you prepare students for community-based practice. The Primary Care Physician
Scholarship Program is part of a larger
effort to really address some of the health workforce
shortages in the state. We want to align the scholarship
program with individuals that grew up in rural and
urban underserved areas and then plan on going into
practice in those areas. There are definitely
people throughout Arizona who have considered medicine
because they want to come back to their communities
to serve, but they don’t know how they’re
going to pay for it. This scholarship will
encourage students to make that commitment
by providing them some debt relief. Every year that we accrue
more and more debt, it’s very, very scary. This is a really
important program so that students are free
to pursue their interest in primary care
education, in residency without having the anxiety of
worrying about a debt burden that they can’t pay
off when they finish. Having an opportunity like
this where it takes away that financial burden,
it really allows me to focus on what I want
to do instead of picking what I want to do
based upon what’s going to pay me the most. To be able to reduce
that burden for them, take away that
stress, we believe it allows them to
most efficiently make a decision that’s best for
them, that they can follow their heart, and they will be
able to serve who they truly want to serve. I feel like growing up in
Phoenix, I was able to witness firsthand the health care
disparities that exist and the needs of the
community that are not met. And so to be able to commit
to serving in Arizona is very exciting, because
this is a passion of mine and this is why I
entered medicine. The fact that I get to go home,
back to the area where I’m from and serve the people who
I grew up with is amazing. And the fact that
my school is being paid for so I can do that just
is like an added cherry on top. This was my path to medicine. And you know I might
seem crazy and it might seem like
it’s not attainable, but you gave a girl from a
really small town an amazing opportunity and an opportunity
to serve her community. Being able to stay in Arizona
where my children were born, where I was married, where
my husband’s family is from, that I will be able
to give something back to the state that
has given me so much. [MUSIC PLAYING]

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