Some health insurance reform opponents are arguing that America's Affordable Health Choices Act will lead to a shortage of health care professionals. The demand for care will certainly increase as millions more Americans are insured. The bill foresees the demand and provides the incentives, the training and the tools a new generation of health care professionals will need to meet demand and preserve the choice of and access to doctors Americans expect and deserve.
Myth: Adding new patients to an already over-taxed system will only exacerbate nurse and primary care physician shortages.
Fact: America's Affordable Health Choices Act will not only provide affordable coverage to 97% of Americans and other necessary reforms, the bill will enhance and grow the nation's primary care health professional workforce through strengthened scholarship, loan repayment and training grant programs. Specifically, the bill would:
- Expand the National Health Service Corps and create a new primary care loan program.
- Increase the advanced practice nursing force.
- Provide a new loan repayment and scholarship program to train a new generation of public health workers.
- Strengthen existing preventive medicine programs.
- Support existing health professionals through the establishment of a study center to gather better data on health workforce needs.
- Computerizing health data will increase efficiencies and the amount of time primary care professionals are caring for patients. [Find More Facts Here]
These are some of the reasons the American Medical Association (AMA), the leading voice for America's physicians, the American Academy of Nursing and other health professional organizations are supporting the bill. As the AMA wrote, “the ‘America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009' … includes a broad range of provisions that are key to effective, comprehensive health system reform… In particular, we are pleased that the bill: … Addresses growing physician workforce concerns…” [Find More Facts Here]
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