Provider Retention in High Need Areas. Economic Model of Location Choices with Application to NHSC Programs

12/22/2014

The retention patterns we observed in Figures III.1 and III.2 appear to indicate that participants have lower HPSA retention than non-participants. There may be a suite of factors in addition to NHSC participation that influence the providers’ decisions to first locate in a HPSA and then move out of a HPSA. In this chapter we provide a theoretical model to provide insights into the impact of these additional factors on the observed retention patterns.

Specifically, in this model we aim to: (i) isolate the key factors influencing providers’ location decisions; (ii) explain why some providers locate in areas that others avoid; and (iii) explain when geographic mobility is high or low. We start with a general location choice model and then expand the model to incorporate the incentives offered by the NHSC programs. A technical version of this model is available in Appendix B.

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