A bipartisan group of senators recently reintroduced the Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act (S. 1302), AHA-supported legislation that would increase by 14,000 the number of Medicare-funded residency positions to help alleviate physician shortages that threaten patients’ access to care.     
     
The bill would add 2,000 positions per year for seven years, targeting a portion of these positions to: hospitals already training over their caps; hospitals in rural areas; hospitals in states with new medical schools or branch campuses; and hospitals serving areas designated as health professional shortage areas.     
     
“Your legislation responsibly addresses the nation’s urgent need for additional physicians,” AHA said in a letter to the bill’s sponsors, Sens. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., John Boozman, R-Ark., Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Susan Collins, R-Maine. “We applaud you as well for directing the Government Accountability Office to recommend to Congress strategies for increasing the diversity of the health professional workforce.”     
     
Reps. Terri Sewell, D-Ala., and Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa., reintroduced the bill in the House last month.  

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