STAND. COM. REP. NO. 669-22

 

Honolulu, Hawaii

, 2022

 

RE: H.B. No. 1549

H.D. 1

 

 

 

 

Honorable Scott K. Saiki

Speaker, House of Representatives

Thirty-First State Legislature

Regular Session of 2022

State of Hawaii

 

Sir:

 

Your Committees on Health, Human Services, & Homelessness and Higher Education & Technology, to which was referred H.B. No. 1549 entitled:

 

"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO LOAN REPAYMENT FOR HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS,"

 

beg leave to report as follows:

 

The purpose of this measure is to appropriate funds to the Department of Health to fund the Hawaii State Loan Repayment Program administered by the John A. Burns School of Medicine.

 

Your Committees received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations; John A. Burns School of Medicine at the University of Hawaii at Manoa; Hawaii State Center for Nursing; Hawaii Health Systems Corporation, East Hawaii Region; Hawaii Psychiatric Medical Association; Kaiser Permanente Hawaii; Hawaii Pacific Health; Hawaii State Rural Health Association; Hawaii Medical Association; Hawaii Primary Care Association; The Queen's Health Systems; Healthcare Association of Hawaii; and seven individuals. Your Committees received comments on this measure from the Department of Health and Department of Budget and Finance.

 

Your Committees find that the John A. Burns School of Medicine currently administers the Hawaii State Loan Repayment Program, which provides student loan repayments for health care professionals who agree to work in a federally-designated health professional shortage area. This program leverages public funds and private donations to access matching federal funds through the National Health Service Corps State Loan Repayment Program of the United States Department of Health and Human Services. Since September 1, 2012, the loan repayment program has supported sixty-four recipients in exchange for work commitments in underserved geographic practice areas in Hawaii, eighty-three percent of whom have remained in the State to practice.

 

Your Committees further find that an investment of state matching funds would enable the John A. Burns School of Medicine to draw as much federal money as possible and allow the program to provide loan repayment to more health care professionals, which will help in the ongoing efforts to alleviate the health care professional shortages in the State.

 

Your Committees have amended this measure by:

 

(1) Changing the appropriation to an unspecified amount;

 

(2) Changing the effective date to July 1, 2060, to encourage further discussion; and

 

(3) Making a technical, nonsubstantive amendment for the purposes of clarity, consistency, and style.

 

Your Committees respectfully request that should your Committee on Finance deliberate on this measure further, that it consider appropriating $500,000 for fiscal year 2022-2023 for the Hawaii State Loan Repayment Program; provided that the funds are matched by funds from a private or another public source.

 

As affirmed by the records of votes of the members of your Committees on Health, Human Services, & Homelessness and Higher Education & Technology that are attached to this report, your Committees are in accord with the intent and purpose of H.B. No. 1549, as amended herein, and recommend that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as H.B. No. 1549, H.D. 1, and be referred to your Committee on Finance.

 

 

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committees on Health, Human Services, & Homelessness and Higher Education & Technology,

 

 

____________________________

GREGG TAKAYAMA, Chair

 

____________________________

RYAN I. YAMANE, Chair