Survey of Health Care Employers in Arizona: Maricopa County Community Health Centers, 2015


Lela Chu and Joanne Spetz

July 26, 2016

A survey of Arizona health care employers was conducted by the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) in the spring of 2016. The survey captured responses from 59 percent of the community health centers (CHCs) in Maricopa County. This is the first survey of Maricopa County CHC employers and provides an opportunity to evaluate overall demand for health care workers in the county. The data obtained reveal the variation in the demand for health care workers within Maricopa County.

Respondents revealed a shortage for: 

  • Physicians (except in Pediatrics)
  • Psychologists
  • Licensed Practical Nurses
  • Pharmacists
  • Pharmacy Technicians
  • Coders Employment
  • Laboratory Technologists
  • Radiology Technologists

Generally, IN BALANCE are:

  • Registered Nurses
  • Medical Assistants
  • Social Workers
  • Community Health Workers

Employment INCREASED over the past year for many occupations, including:

  • Pediatricians
  • Obstetricians/Gynecologists
  • Family Medicine Physicians
  • Nurse Practitioners
  • Promotoras

Development of New Roles

Over 77 percent of CHCs indicated they had created new job classifications over the last year, most often in roles related to care coordination and health coaching. Nearly all CHCs reported expectations that employment for many occupations would increase over the next three years, including for psychologists, physicians in internal medicine, pediatrics, and obstetrics/gynecology, nurse practitioners, and medical assistants. The most frequently reported reasons for expected increases in employment were anticipated increases in patient volume, and planned growth in facility size. These new roles will require new educational programs and additional training for many workers. Employers should continue to invest in the education of their incumbent staff through tuition reimbursement and flexible scheduling, and can work with local colleges and universities to ensure the needed skills are being taught.

Concerns for the Future

CHCs expressed concern about a number of environmental factors, particularly the impact of potential state budget cuts to Medicaid and reimbursement levels dropping. The impact of the expansion in health insurance coverage was reported as somewhat concerning by most CHCs.