The 100th placement for TRP came at the beginning of a flurry of placement activity for the organization, which now has placed a total of 109 clinicians across Tennessee. The 100th placement is Dr. Gregory Mock, who is practicing family medicine at Morgan County Medical Center in Wartburg. He has spent many years in New Mexico, working with the Indian Health Service. Tennessee is fortunate to have his experience and dedication to rural practice.
Established in 2006, TRP works to improve access to primary care services by placing physicians, physician assistants and advanced practice nurses in rural communities and underserved areas across the state.
“For nearly 10 years, TRP has been successful in addressing the healthcare needs of Tennessee’s rural counties and communities, as well as underserved communities in urban areas,” said Bill Jolley, vice president of rural issues at the Tennessee Hospital Association (THA). “Surpassing the 100 placement mark is a special milestone in serving the people of Tennessee.”
TRP was founded through the appropriation of graduate medical education funds from Tennessee’s four medical schools with primary care residency programs in an effort to address gaps in access to care in rural and underserved communities.
Through rural rotation programs for medical residents, TRP is able to introduce healthcare providers to these areas and demonstrate the need for providers in the communities. Competitive resident stipends, as well as incentives for nurse practitioners and physician assistants, also are available for clinicians who choose to practice in these underserved communities.
“For TRP, each and every placement is a special event because it truly changes the face of the community where the clinician goes to practice,” said David Maness, D.O., who serves as TRP’s board chair. “Such tremendous success is a cause for celebration. TRP is truly living up to its mission by helping to change the lives and health of Tennesseans.”
The placement process for TRP’s clinicians works much like a matchmaking service in helping pair healthcare providers with communities. TRP staff work on both sides of the placement to ensure the needs of the clinicians and their families and the needs of communities are compatible. Approximately 200 clinicians and communities currently are working with TRP for potential placements.