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New Alabama Alliance Forming to Tackle State’s Growing Post-ACA Health Needs

Birmingham, AL (January 8, 2013) – The Affordable Care Act (ACA) further pressures the nation’s health care system requiring more health professionals - especially primary and preventive care professionals in rural and urban communities - at a time of rapid and diverse population growth. A new academic partnership – The Alabama Alliance to Transform the Health Professions – aims to tackle this crisis by directly addressing the state’s growing health care needs while providing a working model for other states also committed to expanding and diversifying their health workforces.

Representatives from Alabama’s Academic Health Centers and Historically Black Colleges and Universities will come together for a formal signing of a Memorandum of Understanding which will mark the official formation of the Alabama Alliance. Former Secretary, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Honorary Chairman of the Alabama Alliance Steering Committee, Louis W. Sullivan, M.D., will serve as keynote speaker during the January 11, 2013 ceremony at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

“Training more culturally competent and racially and ethnically diverse health professionals will give Alabama’s citizens greater access to care and better health outcomes. And enhancing local healthcare will give us a stronger nation overall,” said Sullivan.

Over the past 25 years, America’s increasingly diverse population has been growing at a faster rate than its population of trained health personnel. In 2012, the Association of American Medical Colleges reported that America would have a doctor shortage of 90,000 by the year 2020. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that America will need 1.2 million additional registered nurses by 2020. In 2010, HRSA designated 2,300 communities as dental health professional shortage areas – up from 800 in 1993.

The formal signing ceremony will take place at 1 p.m. CST in the Hill University Center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The ceremony is open to news media*:

What:Alabama Alliance to Transform the Health Professions MOU Signing Ceremony
Where:University of Alabama at Birmingham
Hill University Center, Room 413
1400 University Blvd.
Birmingham, AL 35294-1150
When:1 p.m. CST, Friday, January 11, 2013
Who:Senior representatives from The Sullivan Alliance to Transform the Health Professions, University of Alabama-Birmingham, Alabama A&M, Alabama State University, Auburn University, J. F. Drake State Technical College, Miles College, Oakwood University, Selma University, Stillman College, Trenholm State Technical College, Troy University, and Tuskegee University

*Media ops available immediately following ceremony

About the Sullivan Alliance to Transform the Health Professions
Under the leadership of Dr. Louis W. Sullivan, former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, the Sullivan Alliance to Transform the Health Professions was organized in January 2005, to act on the reports and recommendations of the Sullivan Commission (Missing Persons: Minorities in the Health Professions, September, 2004), and the Institute of Medicine Committee on Institutional and Policy-Level Strategies for Increasing the Diversity of the U.S. Healthcare Workforce (In the Nation’s Compelling Interest: Ensuring Diversity in the Healthcare Workforce). The Alliance’s goal is to provide the focused leadership, deep commitment, and sustainable efforts that will result in the addition to our nation’s workforce of more well-trained health professionals from racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds able to provide quality health care and break-through research in the decades ahead.

For more information, go to, Twitter (@SullivanAllianc) or Facebook (

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