Jamie Bell, MD, has a job she loves, working with a poor population in a Birmingham, Ala., hospital. Most of her patients have serious, chronic medical conditions.
“The healthy ones have diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol,” she said. Many are much sicker.
It is a population that badly needs a caring physician, and Bell is able to serve them, despite being nearly $250,000 in debt from medical school, thanks to a program run by the Health Resources and Services Administration.
The program, the National Health Service Corps, provides loan repayment and scholarships to clinicians who agree to work in underserved areas for at least two years. They can earn up to $60,000 in loan repayment and have the option to extend their service to earn more.
To continue reading this story from the August 2012 issue of The Nation’s Health, visit the newspaper online.