In a letter Aug. 1 to House and Senate sponsors, the AHA and 48 other national associations voiced strong support for the Conrad State 30 and Physician Access Reauthorization Act (H.R. 4942/S. 665), bipartisan legislation that would extend for three years the Conrad State 30 program, which allows states to request J-1 visa waivers for foreign physicians to work in federally designated shortage and underserved areas. The bill also would increase state allocations from 30 to 35 physicians per year; and provide flexibility to expand the number of waivers in states where demand exceeds that limit. Without congressional action, the program will expire Oct. 1.
 
“Thankfully, for nearly three decades the Conrad 30 waiver program has helped Americans in rural and underserved areas receive medical care from more than 15,000 high-quality international medical graduate physicians in their local communities,” the letter notes. “…Reauthorizing and strengthening this program is one of many policy solutions to curtail the ongoing medical provider workforce challenges across the country and we look forward to working with you to see this important legislation enacted.”
 
The bill was reintroduced in the House last week and the Senate in March.

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