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Rheum Dis Clin North Am. 2020 Feb;46(1):167-178. doi: 10.1016/j.rdc.2019.09.009.

Underserved Communities: Enhancing Care with Graduate Medical Education.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda University Medical Center, 11234 Anderson Street, Suite 1521, Loma Linda, CA 92354, USA. Electronic address:
Department of Internal Medicine, Loma Linda University, 11234 Anderson Street, Loma Linda, CA 92354, USA.
Department of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, Inflammation and Immunity, Brigham and Women's Hospital, 60 Fenwood Road, Office 6016P, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


The shortage of health care professionals is projected to worsen in the coming years. This is particularly concerning in underserved areas that are fraught with disparities in disease outcomes and life expectancy, quality of life, and health care access. The onus is on medical education institutions to train students to serve vulnerable communities to improve both health care access and the quality of medical school education. When health disparities are formally included in medical education curricula and the culture of medical education shifts to a community-based learning approach, patients and health care providers alike will reap the benefits.


Graduate medical education; Health disparities; Health services; Population health; Underserved


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