As a result of IHA’s intense discussions and negotiations with the Department of Healthcare and Family Services (HFS) on a framework for maximizing ACA access payments to hospitals, legislation to implement the framework, House Bill 4678, was introduced in the General Assembly. HB4678 also restores state funding for the Illinois Poison Center. On Thursday, June 30 the Illinois House approved HB4678 by a vote of 110-0 and then the Governor signed it. IHA thanks everyone who contacted their state legislators to support HB4678.
Please join IHA in urging the Illinois congressional delegation to co-sponsor the Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act (S. 1148/H.R. 2124), which would create 15,000 new physician residency slots across the country.
Today more than ever, Congress must maintain its commitment to support the training of tomorrow’s physician workforce. Given our aging population and the recent coverage expansions enacted as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, there are not enough physicians to meet today’s growing demand for care, much less anticipated future demand. Moreover, the number of available physician training slots at teaching hospitals that are supported by Medicare has been frozen for the last 18 years, drastically reducing hospitals’ ability to train the next generation of physicians. Today, Medicare’s support accounts for less than 30 percent of the total cost of training our physician workforce.
Chicago-area hospitals are doing their part to address the physician workforce shortage and preserving patient access to care. These institutions support hundreds of non-Medicare funded training slots across a variety of settings and specialties, including primary care, at an unreimbursed cost. In 2012, our local hospitals invested more than $388 million on hospital-based education programs to train highly skilled health care professionals in order to meet the region’s growing health care workforce needs by operating medical and nursing schools, running internship and residency programs and providing opportunities to complete clinical rotations, faculty and on-the-job learning experiences. This important legislation seeks to address the physician workforce shortage by creating 3,000 new Medicare-supported physician training positions per year between 2017 and 2021.
Please join IHA in urging members of our congressional delegation to co-sponsor this critical bill.
For more than 20 years, the 340B Drug Pricing Program has provided safety-net hospitals with financial relief from high prescription drug costs. Hospitals use these savings to stretch scarce federal resources to reduce the price of pharmaceuticals for patients, expand services offered to patients and provide services to more patients. In addition, the program generates savings for the federal and state governments.
Please join IHA in urging Congress to reject any proposals that would reduce or scale back the 340B program as it would have a devastating impact for our hospital and metropolitan community.