Analysis of DoD Accession Alternatives for Military Physicians: Readiness Value and Cost

November, 2019
IDA document: P-10815
FFRDC: Systems and Analyses Center
Type: Documents , Human Capital
Division: Cost Analysis and Research Division
Sarah K. John, James M. Bishop, Laura A. Hildreth, Jamie M. Lindly, W. Patrick Luan, Madeline Minneci, George M. Prugh See more authors
The Department of Defense accesses physicians through two primary channels: the Uniformed Services University (USU) F. Edward Hébert School of Medicine and the Armed Forces Health Professions Scholarship Program (HPSP). From time to time, questions arise regarding the cost and value associated with each accession source. We estimate it costs approximately $1 million to access a new physician through USU (vice $400,000 for HPSP). However, when costs are spread over years of service to reflect value, the cost difference is greatly diminished or reversed depending on the time unit and cost definition. Finally, we estimate that 4.48 years, or about 75 percent, of the higher retention observed for USU graduates can be causally attributed to the university. The remaining difference is explained by individual student characteristics like “taste for service.”