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Dandelion Parachute Seed

Caring for Vulnerable Populations

What is a Medically Underserved Area/Population (MUA/P)?

MUAs and MUPs identify geographic areas and populations with a lack of access to primary care services. These designations help establish health maintenance organizations or community health centers.

MUAs have a shortage of primary care health services within geographic areas such as:

  • A whole county

  • A group of neighboring counties

  • A group of urban census tracts

  • A group of county or civil divisions.

MUPs have a shortage of primary care health services for a specific population subset within a geographic area. These groups may face economic, cultural, or language barriers to health care.

Some examples include:

  • People experiencing homelessness

  • People who are low-income

  • People who are eligible for Medicaid

  • Native Americans

  • Migrant farm workers

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