The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) has been awarded a grant from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) totaling more than $890,000 over a five-year period to improve access to health care services for people who are uninsured, isolated or medically vulnerable. The grant tasks the agency to work cooperatively with HRSA to identify and reduce health workforce shortages, and increase access to health care in Oklahoma.  

Funds from the grant support ongoing efforts and will extend through 2024. The goals of the project are to work collaboratively with state partners to produce a statewide primary care needs assessment, identify unmet health care needs and barriers to care, and to advance strategies, which improve access to comprehensive primary health care services in Oklahoma.

“Access to primary care is critical to improving health outcomes in our state,” said Interim Commissioner of Health Tom Bates. “We look forward to continuing the important work with federal, state and local partners to strengthen our workforce across the state and reduce health disparities.”

The OSDH Office of Primary Care and Rural Health Development works with a broad range of federal, state and local partners to increase access to care and promote health workforce initiatives through data-driven planning and the provision of technical assistance to entities wishing to expand access to care.

Partners include: Health Resources Services Administration, Bureau of Health Workforce, National Health Service Corps, Oklahoma Primary Care Association, Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences, University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, Physician Manpower Training Commission, Oklahoma State Office of Rural Health, Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, federally qualified health centers, tribal health care facilities, community mental health centers and correctional facilities.

For more information about efforts of the OSDH Office of Primary Care, visit the website at opc.health.ok.gov or call (405) 271-9444.