Take Action: September 19, 2017 Alleviate physician shortages in underserved areas

While much national attention is being given right now to the Cassidy-Graham healthcare bill gaining momentum in the Senate—and rightly so!—there’s another urgent and time-sensitive healthcare issue that’s getting much less coverage. By 2030, the United States is predicted to be short by 100,000 physicians. This monumental shortage will have the strongest effects in traditionally underserved areas such as rural communities, prisons, public health clinics, and Native American reservations, where doctor shortages are already present.

Two Congressional bills, both called the Resident Physician Shortage Act of 2017, would help to lessen the effects of this future shortage.  The Senate bill is S 1301; the House version is HR 2267. These would create funding for new residency positions in traditionally underserved communities. Last year, more than 15,000 qualified medical school graduates were unable to secure residency positions; increasing funding for medical residencies is a crucial step in ensuring that tomorrow’s physician workforce is adequate for the needs of all Americans. As medical student and MWEG member Katie Dressman put it, “It won’t matter how good your insurance is if there are no doctors to see!”

Please contact your representatives today and make sure they understand the vital importance of passing S 1301/HR 2267.

Possible Call Scripts:

Senators

Hi, my name is [name]. I am calling from [City, state, zip]. I’m asking Senator _ to support Senate bill 1301, which increases funding for medical residencies in traditionally underserved areas. Last year, more than 15,000 qualified medical students were turned down for residency spots. By 2030, the United States is predicted to be short by 100,000 doctors. Increasing the number of residency spots available is a crucial step in making sure that Americans can get the healthcare they need, when they need it.

Thank you, and have a good day.

Representatives

Hi, my name is [name]. I am calling from [City, state, zip]. I’m asking Representative _ to support House bill 2267, which increases funding for medical residencies in traditionally underserved areas. Last year, more than 15,000 qualified medical students were turned down for residency spots. By 2030, the United States is predicted to be short by 100,000 doctors. Increasing the number of residency spots available is a crucial step in making sure that Americans can get the healthcare they need, when they need it.

Thank you, and have a good day.