Frequently Asked Questions

This is a sampling of questions that we frequently receive. If you have other questions that are not addressed, we are happy to speak with you. Please call us at 919-966-7112 or email us.

Many factors are considered in determining participation in the HPDS, which is limited to those health professions which are fully licensed (no exceptions) by North Carolina statute, collect a minimum data set, and are willing to share snapshots of their data with us. The process of evaluating additional health professions data for inclusion is a complex one. Once a profession has met the inclusion standards, the decision to add them to the HPDS will depend on available funding and staff. At this time, we do not have resources to include additional professions. 

Please contact the respective North Carolina licensing board for information. For a list of all licensed professions and their boards in North Carolina, go to the North Carolina Department of Commerce’s Business Link North Carolina site. 

Many states either do not have a system like North Carolina, or are currently in the process of developing one. In general, the best places to start would be a state’s licensing bodies and the State Health Workforce Profiles provided by the Bureau of Health Professions at the Health Resources and Services Administration. 

Please check out our data request guidelines. Feel free to contact us if you have questions or need more details. Requests for individual level data, such as mailing lists or analysis files, require a written approval from the respective board and there is a charge for individual level data requests that require extensive programming. Please see our price list

Please contact us. We would be happy to send you information on the NC HPDS and help answer questions. You should be aware that every state is different in terms of data collection and organization, so what we do in North Carolina may not be feasible or appropriate in your state. However, our information may help you get started.

Additionally, the HRSA-funded Health Workforce Technical Assistance Center, a partnership between the Sheps Center and the Center for Health Workforce Studies at SUNY-Albany, is available to help states and organizations who want to develop new or enhance existing state health workforce data systems.

Many of the topics of our reports stem from recurring themes in data requests and hot topics in the policy world. Available funding, staff workloads and data availability also dictate what we can or cannot do. If you are interested in a report on your profession and have funding to support our team’s time, please send a detailed email to us with your contact information to nchp@unc.edu and we will evaluate whether or not we can produce it. We may also be able to provide data for you to produce your own report. Please see our data request guidelines

Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) are federally designated areas that report a shortage of primary care, mental health or dental providers. For HPSA designation criteria and to see a current list of HPSAs, go to the Shortage Designation Branch of HRSA. In North Carolina, HPSA applications are submitted through the NC Office of Rural Health and Community Care.