Nearly 60 members of the Graduate Medical Education (GME) Advocacy Coalition sent a letter on May 18 to President Joe Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) expressing support for including additional Medicare-supported GME positions in the upcoming infrastructure package.
The letter stated that physicians are a vital part of the nation’s health care infrastructure and that the nation must “train more in order to meet the needs of our diverse and growing nation, ensure patient access to care, and prepare for the next public health crisis.” It also reiterated the coalition’s thanks for the 1,000 new Medicare-supported GME slots included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (P.L. 116-260), but noted that “more is needed to substantially increase the number of physicians.” The letter also highlighted the Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act (S. 834/ H.R. 2256) as a potential way to “alleviate the physician shortage.”
“The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the critical need for additional federal investment in our health care infrastructure, and in particular the need for more physicians. We urge you to invest in additional Medicare-supported GME positions as part of your infrastructure efforts,” the letter concluded.