Michigan primary care doctors push for more state investment to address worsening shortage

People who regularly see primary care physicians tend to live longer and healthier lives – if they can locate and secure doctors near home, Michigan doctors said.

Despite the necessity of such practitioners, who handle patients from birth to death, from newborns to grandparents, there are too few of them and trends suggest there will be even fewer as current practitioners age and medical students with six-figure loan debts chose more lucrative specialties.

Nearly 3 million people live in parts of the state with an inadequate population-to-provider ratio, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, which cited 2021 data from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration. The problems are especially stark in rural regions and urban centers.

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