Physician Migration Into and Out of Texas

Authors: Imam Xierali*, UT Southwestern Medical Center
Topics: Medical and Health Geography, Geographic Information Science and Systems, Spatial Analysis & Modeling
Keywords: migration, physician, maldistribution, health accessibility
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/4/2019
Start / End Time: 9:55 AM / 11:35 AM
Room: Madison A, Marriott, Mezzanine Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


In light of the national maldistribution of physician workforce, learning how to influence their geographic distribution is an important policy issue. Texas has become one of the popular destination states for physician migration. This study aimed to describe recent trends in the movement of physicians into and out of Texas. Data sources of the study include 2016 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimate Public Use Micro Sample data. For the physician who moved into or out of Texas, we compared the differences in origin and destination by Public Use Microdata Area (PUMAs) level rurality, poverty, and diversity. PUMAs designate areas of 100,000 or more population. The physicians' age, gender, race/ethnicity, and area characteristics were compared between those who moved into vs those moved out of Texas. Finally, we described the net gain of immigration at state levels. Preliminary results show an estimated 3613 physicians moved into and 2334 physicians moved out Texas, leaving an estimated net gain of 1279 physicians for Texas. New York, California, Ohio, Maryland, and Oklahoma were the top five origin states, whereas Colorado, California, Illinois, New Mexico, and North Carolina were the top five destination states. At a time of looming physician workforce shortages particularly in rural and medically underserved communities, more studies are needed to assess health access issues resulting from physician migrations especially in poorer and rural areas. In-depth study of other factors such as area amenity may be needed to fully understand pull-push factors for physician migration.

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