Rosen introduces bills to address statewide doctor shortages

Sen. Jacky Rosen (D) Nevada
Sen. Jacky Rosen (D) Nevada(Ed Pearce)
Published: Mar. 8, 2023 at 10:58 AM PST
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WASHINGTON D.C., Virginia (KOLO) - U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen introduced a package of bipartisan bills aimed at addressing a shortage of doctors and dentists both in Nevada and across the country.

All of Nevada’s counties are experiencing a shortage of medical professionals, according to Rosen. The state ranks 48th in the nation in the availability of doctors per 100,000 residents.

Her package of legislation contains bills that would increase Nevada‘s access to medical residency slots and incentivize doctors to practice in underserved areas.

“Nevada is facing a dire shortage of medical providers, making it difficult for too many Nevadans to access quality health care services. With all 17 of our counties experiencing a physician shortage, Congress must take swift action to address this critical issue,” said Senator Rosen. “I’m introducing this bipartisan package of bills to help increase the number of physicians practicing in communities across Nevada and ensure that more Nevadans can get the care they need.”

The trio of bills were introduced along with three Republican Senators.

The Physicians for Underserved Areas Act was introduced with Senator John Boozman of Arkansas and would revise the graduate medical education process to give medical residency programs in areas with physician shortages a greater chance of gaining available residency slots.

The Specialty Physicians Advancing Rural Care Act with Senator Roger Wicker of Mississippi would help address the shortage of physicians in rural communities by creating a student loan repayment program for specialist physicians and non-physician specialty providers practicing in rural areas.

The bipartisan Resident Education Deferred Interest Act was also introduced with Senator Boozman and would allow for a pause on student loan interest accrual, as well as a pause on principal loan repayment, for medical and dental students while serving in their residencies or internships.