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Advocating on Behalf of the Small and Solo Practice Doctors who are Essential Community Providers

In advocating on behalf of the underserved AANHPI community, NCAPIP pays special attention to how health reform is impacting a vital part of America's safety net: small and solo practice primary care physicians (PCPs).

While clinics, including Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), are vital parts of the same safety net for AANHPI communities to access quality care, research shows that a significant portion of that community (and other minority, LEP, lower-income populations)- upwards of 60% - continue to access care from physicians in private practice.

For healthcare in America, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has ushered in a sea change. The ACA champions a healthcare model based on principles like team-based care, preventive care, and the adoption of health information technology as a standard of practice (including Electronic Health Records, or EHRs), many of these PCPs are left in the wake.

Many of them treat Medicaid and MediCare patients as well as the uninsured - the influx of newly insured patients (both through the marketplace and through Medicaid expansion) has increased patient panels for many doctors while Medicaid reimbursements are - in a significant number of cases - prohibitive for practices. Simultaneously, AANHPI patients who are newly insured can't find the doctors who know them, their culture, language, and even family members, because they have not been recognized as "Essential Community Providers", though they epitomize that designation every day.

FQHCs and public clinics have both the resources to more effectively adopt and utilize EHRs and models of team based care. The resources available to small and solo practice PCPs are typically less and harder to access.

To read the latest report documenting the experience of Asian American small and solo practice physicians, who serve underserved Asian American patients and communities click here: Read or download the full report here.