The Tri-Committee draft legislation takes a significant step towards establishing a health care workforce which will sustain a high-quality, cost-effective, fully accessible health care system. Moves to establish an Advisory Committee on Health Workforce Evaluation and Assessment, re-invest in the National Health Service Corps and Title VII of the Public Health Service Act, redistribute unused Medicare GME positions to primary care programs and establish teaching health centers, and address payment and practice challenges to primary care through the medical home and accountable care organization pilot programs are all positive moves towards a sustainable health care workforce. However, to fully achieve workforce reform, the following are recommended:
Promoting the Advisory Committee on Health Workforce Evaluation and Assessment to a "National Commission on the Health Workforce," providing it with an authorization and clarifying its role in reporting to Congress, including addressing Medicare GME payments.
Fully supporting the Teaching Health Centers program, converting it to at minimum a pilot program rather than a demonstration project and creating a Teaching Health Centers Development Grant within Title VII.
Further increasing National Health Service Corps authorization for appropriations to maximize the program's full potential to provide health care in the most underserved areas.
Increasing primary care bonus payments and SGR target growth rate to ensure effective maintenance and incentives for primary care.
Invest in a primary care extension program to provide technical assistance and training programs for strengthening primary care practice.
Mullan, Fitzhugh, "Tri-Committee Draft Proposal for Health Care Reform" (2009). Health Policy and Management Congressional Testimonies. Paper 5.