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Doctors, Lawmakers Propose Ways To Expand Medical Workforce

A group of California physicians joined lawmakers at the state Capitol today. They say the state has a shortage of physicians and they propose a package of bills to remedy it.

Aired 4/16/13 on KPBS News.

A group of California physicians joined lawmakers at the state Capitol today. They say the state has a shortage of physicians, and they propose a package of bills to remedy it.

Democratic Assemblyman Jose Medina says his district in Riverside County is badly underserved and he wants funding for a medical school there.

“With this shortage of doctors in the region, and with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, this emergency situation is going to quickly become catastrophic,” Medina said.

The physicians also want more medical residency slots and they propose measures that would place doctors in needed areas.

But critics say the doctors’ proposals fall short and come too late. Other lawmakers want to expand the scope of practice of health care professionals. They say nurse practitioners and pharmacists could help deliver some primary care services.

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