California faces a growing shortage of health care providers and the pandemic has exposed deep racial and ethnic inequities in health care access. UC PRIME helps address these challenges by preparing future doctors to work in historically under-resourced communities. PRIME students receive high-quality medical training along with additional curriculum tailored to meet the needs of underserved communities.
With six programs across California, PRIME’s focus on medically underserved communities has resulted in extraordinary increases in racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic diversity across the UC medical education system, with 67% of PRIME students from groups underrepresented in medicine compared to 13.6% at medical schools nationally, helping ensure that more physicians reflect California’s population. Presently, Latinx make up almost 40% of the state’s population but account for only 7% of the state’s physicians, while more than 6% of Californians are Black yet only make up 3% of the state’s physicians. Further, California has the highest Native American population in the country yet Native Americans make up less than 1% of the state’s current medical students.
We’re asking state lawmakers to provide $12.9 million for UC PRIME. This funding will support existing programs and the creation of two new programs focused on caring for Native American and Black/African American communities in California.
UC is committed to helping all of our communities emerge from COVID-19 stronger than before, and funding to sustain and expand UC PRIME is essential to this mission.
Each PRIME program has a dedicated area of focus, targeted student recruitment, relevant curricular content, and dedicated faculty mentorship. The current six PRIME programs are:
- Rural PRIME (Rural California) at Davis: Incorporates an award-winning model program in telemedicine with a commitment to rural health care.
- PRIME-LA (Leadership and Advocacy) at Los Angeles: Trains future physicians to deliver culturally competent care and develops leadership skills.
- San Joaquin Valley PRIME hosted by UCSF: Expands the San Joaquin Valley physician workforce by recruiting students from the region who want to practice there in the future.
- PRIME-US (Urban Underserved) at San Francisco: Enables students to pursue interests in caring for homeless and other underserved populations in urban communities.
- PRIME-LC (Latino Community) at Irvine: Emphasizes Latino health issues, including increased proficiency in medical Spanish and in Latino culture.
- PRIME-HEq (Health Equity) at San Diego: Incorporates health disparities and minority health issues so graduates can contribute to equity in care delivery.
Will you ask lawmakers to support funding for UC PRIME? Send an email using our customizable prewritten template.
Thank you for standing up for UC, and for working with us to help California recover.