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Informing Policy. Advancing Health.

What Factors Convince a Physician to Practice in Rural Colorado?

In many of Colorado’s rural areas, it is a challenge to recruit and retain primary care physicians.
Date last upated: April 26, 2012

A statewide survey by CHI asked Colorado’s rural physicians to rate the factors that contributed to their decision to practice medicine in rural Colorado. Lifestyle-related factors topped the list, with recreational and leisure activities (70%) and having a good place to raise children (55%) ranking first and second. These findings illustrate the importance of lifestyle considerations when physicians choose a practice location – and should be considered by recruiters as well.

Currently, the most common recruitment incentives reported by these physicians were financial, such as income guarantees (51%) or relocation benefits (35%). The third most common recruitment incentive was flexible scheduling (31%), which aligns with the importance of lifestyle values.