Anthem Funds Initiative to Address Nevada’s Physician Shortage, Support Nevada’s Various Pre-Medical Students, and Promote Health Equity

RENO, Nevada – (COMMERCIAL THREAD) – Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Nevada’s Medicaid Health Plan have committed $ 75,000 to fund a new University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med) called See it to be that. This initiative will connect aspiring physicians from under-represented populations in medicine and medically underserved communities with medical students and physicians from similar backgrounds. By supporting pre-med students throughout the medical school admission process, the program will support the joint commitment of UNR Med and Anthem to preparing a diverse workforce of physicians. In turn, a more diverse medical workforce will be able to provide more equitable health services to multicultural, multiracial and socio-economically diverse populations as well as medically underserved communities.

“Physician shortages are at an all time high in the United States and have reached unprecedented levels in Nevada, particularly in communities in underserved areas,” said UNR Med Dean. Thomas L. Schwenk, MD “The See it to be that The initiative aims to have a direct impact on developing a pool of physicians with the cultural skills necessary to build strong physician-patient relationships and influence positive change in diverse communities. We believe this initiative will lay a solid foundation for the future of our state, and we cannot thank Anthem enough for making the program possible.

According to a report According to the Association of American Medical Colleges, the United States could experience an estimated physician shortage of 139,000 physicians by 2033. Nevada’s physician shortage is one of the most severe in the country, with the state ranking 48e for doctor-patient ratios. Nevada is also the fourth fastest growing US state, with black and Latin populations leading this growth. However, the number of practicing physicians in Nevada is not keeping pace with population growth, which will likely lead to more problems accessing care, especially in fast-growing communities of color in rural Nevada. and among the tribal communities of Nevada.

“Several studies have shown that patients from diverse backgrounds are more likely to form trusting relationships with physicians who come from their own community and who can relate to their stories and experiences,” said Lisa Thompson, MD, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Medical Director of Shield Nevada Medicaid and Leader of the Health Equity Task Force. “Anthem is committed to identifying health disparities specific to Nevada, so we can introduce solutions that create more equitable health care experiences, improve accessibility to health care, and improve outcomes for the community. health. Anthem’s collaboration with UNR Med on See it to be that initiative is just one example of how we live up to our commitment and live out our life-improving mission.

the See it to be that initiative has four elements:

  1. A community initiative that recruits physicians, medical students, health care leaders and advocates from across the state to join a group that shares a passion for supporting pre-med students from medically under-represented communities and populations under-represented in medicine. This group will meet regularly to discuss needs and develop solutions.

  2. Monthly podcasts with physicians, medical students, educators, public health officials and other key stakeholders / influencers. These podcasts will help amplify messages and keep conversations going.

  3. A mentoring program that connects pre-med students who participate in the program with a group of three mentors, which includes a practicing physician, a medical student, and a community member. This program will provide students with access to resources and support during their studies.

  4. A day-long summit that brings together pre-med students, physicians, healthcare advocates and others committed to expanding diversity, inclusion and equity among the medical workforce and to serve the diverse populations of Nevada.

“Anthem recognizes the complexity of healthcare and is committed to developing unique solutions that meet the needs of the communities we serve,” said Lisa Bogard, president of Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Nevada, Medicaid. “By providing innovative solutions and removing barriers, we can make healthcare simpler, more accessible, more equitable and help improve the health of our state. ”

the See it to be that The initiative should be launched at the start of the 2021/2022 school year. UNR Med has already hosted its first statewide meeting and is inviting physicians, community members and anyone interested in developing a diverse medical workforce to become members of the See it to be that community. UNR Med Outreach and Recruitment Coordinator Andre Lawson and UNR Med Admissions Director Tamara Martinez-Anderson will manage the initiative with the support of a second year medical student intern. , Abel Edossa, and the participation of interest groups of UNR Med students. For more information, contact UNR Med at [email protected]

About Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Nevada

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Nevada are helping to improve access and quality of health care for more than 600,000 Nevada residents by developing innovative care management programs and services. Anthem’s top priority is the health and well-being of its members and access to comprehensive healthcare. Through health education and community awareness programs, members are empowered to choose and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield is the trade name of Community Care Health Plan of Nevada, Inc., an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Anthem is a registered trademark of Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. To learn more, visit www.anthem.com. Also follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/anthemBCBS_news or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/AnthemMedicaid/.

About the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine

the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine, Nevada’s first public school of medicine, is a research-driven community medical school with a statewide vision for a healthy Nevada. Since 1969, UNR Med has trained more than 3,900 students, residents and fellows. UNR Med continues to improve the health and well-being of all Nevadans and their communities through excellence in student education, postgraduate training and clinical care, research with local, national and global impact. and a culture of diversity and inclusion. For more information visit med.unr.edu.

About Geraldine Higgins

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