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North Country Health Consortium

Region 7 IDN

Behavioral Health Workforce Development

Development of a behavioral health workforce is a Statewide Project. The North Country Region 7 Integrated Delivery Network (IDN) Service Region has been designated by the US Department of Health and Human Service, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) as a primary care and mental health professional shortage area.  According to the 2016 County Health Rankings, the ratio of the population to primary care physicians is 860:1 in Coos County, and 1,109:1 in Carroll County. However, the more critical shortage is reflected in the ratio of the population to mental health providers, including psychiatrists, psychologists, licensed clinical social workers, counselors, marriage and family therapists, and advanced practice nurses, which for Coos County is 750:1 and 430:1 for Carroll County, as compared to the NH ratio of 390:1.

Recruitment of qualified behavioral health professionals poses unique challenges for our region. Our rural environment, lack of extracurricular activities for family members, and the sometimes limited options for career paths prevent people from moving here. We also face lower salaries compared to more urban areas, and the complexity of obtaining licensure when moving from other states is also a barrier.

North Country Health Consortium (NCHC), the Administrative Lead for the Region 7 IDN, has been a reputable resource for workforce development efforts spanning the last 17 years through NCHC’s Northern New Hampshire Area Health Education Center (NNH AHEC) program. The NNH AHEC aims to ensure rural challenges and solutions are included in workforce development policy both in New Hampshire and nationally.

Workforce Development initiatives will include:

 

 

Preparedness and Response Public Health Advisory Council
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