Idaho and its rural communities face a chronic shortage of physicians. In fact, the Gem State ranks 45th in the nation for the number of primary care physicians per capita. Now, a newly-created non-profit foundation called The Primary Care Initiative is dedicated to helping improve access to healthcare for Idahoans.
This dire need for primary care physicians in Idaho, and especially in its rural communities, is what motivated the creation of this foundation, which was established in partnership with the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine and Blue Cross of Idaho. The Primary Care Initiative (PCI) aims to encourage new doctors to practice in Idaho through scholarships and medical education debt repayments.
“We have to elevate these communities so that people have a primary care physician that supports and knows them, because that is the longevity, the stability, and frankly, the success of Idaho,” said Charlene Maher, Board Member of the PCI Foundation and the President and CEO of Blue Cross of Idaho.
Both the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine and Blue Cross of Idaho have contributed significant seed money to launch this foundation, and the PCI aims to raise $25 million over the next five years in support of its mission.
Ball Ventures, a commercial development and strategic capital investment company, recently donated $220,000 to The Primary Care Initiative.
“For Ball Ventures, making investments to help improve access to healthcare for all Idahoans is a tremendous privilege, plus the right thing to do,” said Cortney Liddiard, CEO of Ball Ventures. “Idaho is where we live, work, and do business. Nothing is more precious than good health. I deeply admire the leadership of Blue Cross of Idaho and ICOM for starting the PCI, and for inspiring us and many of our partners to get involved.”
The donation from Ball Ventures was supported in part by several affiliates, including:
- Ball Ventures
- Cortney Liddiard
- B&T Hospitality
- Rusty Townsend
- Teton Auto Group
- Mario Hernandez
- BVA Development
- Tommy Ahlquist
- Rexburg Motor Sports
- Iron Horse RV
- Sunterra Springs
- Terrace Home Health
“We can’t do this alone. We need leaders from throughout Idaho to join us in supporting this effort to attract more physicians to Idaho,” said Dr. Tracy J. Farnsworth, Board Member of the PCI Foundation and President of the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine. “The PCI is extremely thankful to BVA and its subsidiaries for this generous donation that will directly impact the future of healthcare in Idaho.”