Primary Care And Medical Education
Senator Leahy understands the importance of primary care physicians in promoting the health and wellbeing of Vermonters. With the expansion of health care as a result of the Affordable Care Act, it is especially crucial that all patients have access to the services they need regardless of income or where they live in the state.
The Affordable Care Act included a temporary provision to reimburse qualified providers for services rendered at the rate reimbursed by Medicare. The provision will soon expire. Senator Leahy is committed to ensuring physicians have the resources they need to continue providing excellent services to Vermonters, and he looks forward to working to extend this provision.
Senator Leahy has long championed the expansion of Federally Qualified Health Centers. These centers are clinics that receive funds from the federal government to provide health care to all patients regardless of their income, and there are 11 of these clinics in Vermont. In 2015 Senator Leahy voted in support of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015, which was signed into law on April 16, 2015. The legislation included over $7 billion for Community Health Centers throughout the country. These funds will ensure that the millions of people served by these important facilities nationwide, will continue to enjoy access to care.
Graduate Medical Education
Physicians are essential to public health. Without a strong primary care physician and specialist presence in the health care work force, we are denying patients access to the services they need.
Senator Leahy has long fought for increased funding at teaching hospitals, like the University of Vermont Medical Center, that provide medical students with the services and education they need to succeed as doctors.
With a possible shortage of physicians in the coming years, Senator Leahy is a proud cosponsor of the Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act, which would amend the Social Security Act to provide for the distribution of additional residency positions at teaching hospitals throughout the country. This is a serious issue that the Senator remains committed to addressing in the 114th Congress.