This fight over who can treat patients to meet the growing demand for medical services is ongoing in other states, as well. The Times reports that in the past two years, approximately 350 laws redefining what health professionals may treat have been enacted across the country, and more than 50 proposals have been put forward in 24 states since the beginning of this year.
To alleviate the problem, the California Medical Association has suggested expanding participation in a loan repayment program for medical school graduates, which now gives doctors as much as $105,000 for working for three years in under-served communities.
“We’re not going to produce thousands of additional doctors in any kind of short-term time frame,” said Democratic state Assemblyman Roger Dickinson. “It makes sense to look at changes that could relieve the pressure that we’re going to undoubtedly encounter for access to care.”
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