HAP Resource Center

Advocacy Correspondence: Support Memo, House Bill 245

March 11, 2021

TO:  Members of the Pennsylvania House Professional Licensure Committee

FROM:  The Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania

SUBJECT:  Support House Bill 245

The Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania (HAP), on behalf of its members— more than 240 acute and specialty hospitals and health systems—appreciates the opportunity to provide comment on the proposed legislation to amend the process by which graduates of international medical schools become licensed. Please support House Bill 245, sponsored by Representative Aaron Kaufer.

Building and maintaining a robust health care workforce has been identified as a major challenge for Pennsylvania by the health care community. HAP convened a task force of its members to conduct a thorough analysis of hospital workforce needs. The result of this effort culminated in the development of a recommendation report titled Addressing Pennsylvania’s Health Care Workforce Challenges.

As outlined in HAP’s workforce report, as of March 2019, Pennsylvania had a total of 51,069 active physicians, including 24,302 primary care physicians (PCPs) and 26,767 specialist physicians. Data suggests that PCP shortages will continue to be a problem here and around the nation; by 2030, the commonwealth will lack more than 1,000 additional PCPs.

As a commonwealth, we need to be innovative and implementing strategies that would mitigate this projected shortage of physicians.

Currently, U.S. and Canadian medical school graduates are required to complete two years of residency training to obtain a medical license. However, graduates of international medical schools are currently required to complete three years of residency training before they can apply for a license.

House Bill 245 will ensure that graduates of international medical schools are held to the same educational standards as graduates of U.S. and Canadian medical schools when seeking licensure in Pennsylvania. Passage of House Bill 245 will provide for more access to physicians and in turn, greater access to care.

HAP appreciates the legislature’s efforts and commitment to promote improvements in the quality of care delivered within the commonwealth’s health care system. HAP supports the proposals within House Bill 245 that will ensure a more robust physician workforce in the commonwealth.

Please vote yes for House Bill 245.


Topics: State Advocacy, Workforce

Revision Date: 3/11/2021

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