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Virginia struggling to counter decline in physicians

The News & Advance, October 26, 2010

Attracting more physicians to the area, and keeping them, is a challenge that has become more urgent. So much so that Centra is in the midst of creating a formal Physician Recruiting Office, where staff will work to convince physicians to consider coming to Lynchburg for their residency or to practice.

The need is expected to grow locally and nationwide. Studies released last month predict a significant shortage of doctors across the country over the next 15 years.

At the same time, Virginia has a more difficult time retaining new doctors than many other states, with only about a third of graduates from the state’s medical schools choosing to stay in the commonwealth, according to a study from the state’s Healthcare Workforce Data Center. That ranks Virginia 30th out of 45 states in the percentage of physicians remaining in state after medical school.

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