What investments does the Affordable Care Act make in the healthcare workforce?

To help increase access to care, the Affordable Care Act includes investments in healthcare professionals, including:

  • Expanding the National Health Service Corps to repay student loans and provide scholarships for primary care physicians, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners willing to work in underserved areas (effective 2010).
  • Providing increased payment to rural healthcare providers to help them continue to serve their communities (effective 2010).
  • Establishing the Community First Choice Option, which allows states to offer home- and community-based services to disabled people through Medicaid rather than institutional care in nursing homes (effective 2011).
  • Increasing Medicaid Payments for primary care doctors. States must pay primary care physicians no less than 100 percent of Medicare payment rates in 2013 and 2014 for primary care services (effective 2013).

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