STAND. COM. REP. NO. 269

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

, 2021

 

RE: H.B. No. 313

H.D. 2

 

 

 

 

Honorable Scott K. Saiki

Speaker, House of Representatives

Thirty-First State Legislature

Regular Session of 2021

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committee on Higher Education & Technology, to which was referred H.B. No. 313, H.D. 1, entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO PHYSICIAN WORKFORCE ASSESSMENT,"

 

begs leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose of this measure is to address the physician shortage in the State by:

 

(1) Repealing the requirement that a certain percentage of assessment fees deposited into the John A. Burns School of Medicine Special Fund be used for purposes identified by the Hawaii Medical Education Council;

 

(2) Repealing the monetary cap of expenditures from the John A. Burns School of Medicine Special Fund; and

 

(3) Authorizing the John A. Burns School of Medicine Special Fund to provide loan repayment to physicians who commit to working in medically underserved areas of the State as part of the Hawaii Rural Health Care Provider Loan Repayment Program and scholarships for qualifying medical students.

 

Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the University of Hawaii System, Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, Hilo Medical Center Foundation, Hawaii State Rural Health Association, Hawaii Medical Association, and Hawaii Primary Care Association. Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Hawaii Medical Board.

 

Your Committee finds that besides a physician workforce shortage in the State, Hawaii also faces a critical need for physicians to serve in rural and medically underserved communities in the State. According to the University of Hawaii, the shortage of physicians is as high as 1,008 and is compounded by Hawaii having the fifth oldest physician workforce of all states. Your Committee notes that more than half of the State's physicians will be over age sixty-five within ten years. Your Committee further finds that this measure will enable the John A. Burns School of Medicine to expand the use of funding received through the Physician Workforce Assessment Project and strengthen the physician workforce in the State through loan repayment and scholarships from the John A. Burns School of Medicine Special Fund.

 

As the need for physicians in rural and medically underserved communities is great, your Committee urges that recipients of loan repayment and scholarships practice in these specific areas after completing their medical education and training.

 

Your Committee has amended this measure by:

 

(1) Correctly identifying the loan repayment program as the Hawaii Rural Health Care Provider Loan Repayment Program; and

 

(2) Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.

 

As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Higher Education & Technology that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 313, H.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it be referred to your Committee on Finance in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 313, H.D. 2.

 

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Higher Education & Technology,

 

 

 

 

____________________________

GREGG TAKAYAMA, Chair