Dr. Sachita Shah
Rural American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) communities face physician vacancy rates over 25%. This article reviews existing programs aimed to address those gaps, then demonstrates that three recently developed clinical fellowship programs fill an important staffing gap.
The fellowships, led by faculty at large academic health centers, place fellows in clinical positions in rural AI/AN communities in partnership with tribal health systems and/or the Indian Health Service. The fellowships seek to enhance health systems’ capacity development through community-centered initiatives that include training and health promotion.