June 27, 2024

ACR Responds to Senate Finance Committee GME Working Group Proposal

The American College of Radiology® (ACR®) responded June 21 to a proposal on Medicare-supported graduate medical education (GME) drafted by the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance Chair Ron Wyden and a bipartisan group of Finance Committee senators.

The proposal aims to address physician workforce shortages, challenges faced by rural and other underserved communities to accessing care, barriers to rural physician training, improved data collection and transparency, as well as other topics. In a press release, the working group acknowledged that there are not enough physicians to meet the healthcare needs of Americans.

ACR’s response to the proposal recommended that the working group:

• Ensure radiologists in shortage areas only interpret necessary imaging tests; modernize and implement Section 218 (b) of the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014 (PAMA) which requires all ordering providers to consult appropriate use criteria (AUC).
• Address systematic issues with the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, which plays an important role in the longevity of the physician workforce.
• Increase the number of Medicare-supported GME positions by passing the Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act of 2023, S. 1302.
• Promote expanded development of rural training programs and encourage rural teaching hospitals to apply for new positions.
• Reauthorize and strengthen the Conrad 30 program by passing the Conrad State 30 and Physician Access Reauthorization Act, S. 665.

ACR also joined the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) GME Coalition in a sign-on letter to the working group.

ACR looks forward to working with the Senate Finance Committee on policies to address the physician workforce crisis. For questions, contact Ashley Walton, ACR Government Affairs Director.