Earlier this week Representatives Brad Schneider (D-IL), Susan Brooks (R-IN), Elise Stefanik (R-NY), and Ann Kuster (D-NH) began circulating a “Dear Colleague” letter in support of the Opioid Workforce Act of 2019 (H.R. 2439). This important bill addresses the shortage of physicians trained to treat substance use disorders by funding 1,000 additional Medicare-reimbursed residency positions in addiction psychiatry, pain management, and addiction medicine. The Dear Colleague letter is attached.
GNYHA strongly supports this legislation and worked to craft it with Congressional staff and the Association of American Medical Colleges during the last Congress. We believe we will generate enough support to pass the Opioid Workforce Act of 2019 in the House of Representatives.
Momentum for this bill will be driven by the tremendous support that the Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act of 2019 (H.R. 1763/S. 348), which would fund 15,000 additional Medicare-reimbursed residency slots over five years, has received. This bill, which already has nearly 120 House cosponsors from both parties and every geographic region, is putting significant pressure on Congress to pursue GME legislation.
Please feel free to use GNYHA’s position paper on this legislation in your advocacy efforts. We will keep our members apprised of any relevant developments.