Texas has a rural health care disparity.
This means that 75 percent of our counties are federally designated health professional shortage areas. There simply aren’t enough doctors and nurses. Sixty-four of our counties lack a hospital, and 25 counties have no primary care physician. In short, rural health care disparity in our state means some 3 million Texans struggle to access the care they need.
Addressing the health gap facing our medically underserved areas would start with increased education about the benefits of checkups and procedures, better health care access, and expanded affordability. We also must find ways to combat the persistent, systemic disadvantages that often serve as a barrier to quality care.
This is an enormously complex problem without an easy solution. The best approach is to focus on one health care issue at a time where progress can be made. Improving our ability to screen more Texans for