Need for medical providers continues to grow in Kentucky

Need for medical providers continues to grow in Kentucky
Published: May. 1, 2023 at 2:56 PM CDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The need for medical providers continues to grow in the bluegrass as demand steadily increases.

The need for quality health care is a major focus in Kentucky.

“So, other hospitals call us; they want to transfer a patient in because they have care that they cannot perform and only we can perform. Unfortunately, we have to say no to some of those,” said Dr. Eric Monday, University of Kentucky.

UK Hospital says, at times, those patients have had to travel to other states.

The two struggles plaguing the field are infrastructure and talent. UK’s board says they’re working to address both, including a major expansion announced last week.

“Just in the next five years or so, we’re going to need almost 5,000 more employees at UK HealthCare, to support these activities,” said Dr. Monday.

The University of Kentucky College of Medicine is preparing to graduate its largest class of medical students, 190 of them across four campuses, preparing to begin their careers in health care.

The acting dean of the College of Medicine, Dr. Charles “Chipper” Griffith, says he’s hopeful they can graduate enough students to catch up to the physician shortage at some point.

“It’s very dire there’s shortages all across the Commonwealth,” said Dr. Griffith. “There’s places in Lexington and Lousiville that have physician needs.

Thanks to partnerships at regional campuses across the bluegrass, some students are now able to study close to home and hopefully remain and practice there.

“There’s counties without a single physician sometimes. I think we can make help meet this need and one thing we’ve been stressing is there’s a need for physicians of all types,” said Dr. Griffith.

From family practice to psychiatry, the movement of care is on the rise in the Commonwealth.