Central Illinois Congressman Aaron Schock is using the day medical students across the country find out where they'll do their residencies to introduce legislation he says will help curb the nation's shortage of physicians. The Peoria Republican says the country is tens of thousands of spaces short in graduate medical education slots available to prospective doctors. He says no grad school residency slots have been added since 1997.
"This is one area where the federal government, in 15 years, has not increased the slots. So, we can continue to educate more and more doctors, but if they can't actually get a slot to go and become a resident, they don't become a doctor."
Schock says there are about 62,000 fewer doctors than needed in the US and he says that number could more than double in the next ten years. He's co-sponsoring the legislation with Pennsylvania Democrat Allyson Schwartz (pictured above with Schock.). Schock says the bill would cost about $2 billion over ten years and can be paid for through the medicare re-authroization process.
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