HealthLeaders-InterStudy, the leading provider of managed care market intelligence, reports that a four-year medical school on the campus of the Texas Tech University and a separately licensed 140-bed children's hospital at Thomason Hospital are on the horizon for the El Paso healthcare market. According to the latest El Paso Market Overview, local officials are hoping that both facilities will serve as a beacon, attracting doctors to research, study and practice in the area for years to come.
"These additions to the market should give a much-needed boost to several sectors of the El Paso healthcare market, including physicians and hospitals," states Jennifer Cameli, market analyst for HealthLeaders-InterStudy and author of the report. "It is hoped that these new facilities will help draw more new physicians to the area."
This past October, El Paso's medical school officially became the Paul L. Foster School of Medicine at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) at El Paso. This medical school is the first such facility on the U.S.-Mexico border and only the second new medical school built in the United States in the last 25 years. In November 2007, voters approved a bond for a separately licensed 140-bed children's hospital at Thomason Hospital that is slated to open in 2011. Thomason Hospital officials are committing $30 million over the next several years to recruit pediatricians and pediatric sub- specialists for the new freestanding children's facility.
Physicians tend to remain in the area in which they served their residencies, so the new medical school's presence should help alleviate the physician shortage. There are roughly 130 total physicians per 100,000 residents in the local area, versus 218 per 100,000 nationally. For primary- care physicians, the area has an estimated 55 physicians per 100,000 residents, versus 97 primary care physicians per 100,000 residents nationally.
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