Sinema-Backed Bipartisan Bill Increases Number of Medical Providers in Arizona

Mar 9, 2020

WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema cosponsored the Improving Access to Health Care in Rural and Underserved Areas Act—bipartisan legislation to support training and increase the number of specialists at Federally Qualified Health Centers and Rural Health Clinics.
“Investing in medical training will help close the provider shortage in Arizona, especially in our rural communities, and ensures families have access to affordable, quality health care,” said Sinema.
Every county in Arizona has a shortage of health care providers, and many rural areas have no access to needed specialists. The Sinema-backed Improving Access to Health Care in Rural and Underserved Areas Act provides extra resources to rural and underserved areas to help them meet the unique needs of their patients by hiring specialists or providing specialty training to their primary care providers to care for patients with diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic conditions.
Sinema recently met with the Mohave Health Coalition to address health challenges in northern Arizona, including the area’s provider shortage. Mohave County is experiencing shortages in primary physicians, mental health providers, and nurses. Sinema and the Mohave Health Coalition discussed potential solutions to improve community access to care by addressing concerns with Medicare/Medicaid payments and federal funding to rural communities.
Sinema has championed a number of legislative proposals to address the provider shortage in Arizona. Sinema is a cosponsor of the bipartisan Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act—legislation that increase the number of medical training positions in areas with a physician shortage. Additionally, Sinema cosponsored the Nursing Where It’s Needed Act which increases the amount of Nurse Corps nurses in Arizona health care facilities.