The CMS has posted on its website a list of U.S. teaching hospitals—by provider number—that will see reductions and/or increases to their direct and indirect graduate medical education full-time employee resident caps.
CMS shuffles medical residency slots
A section of last year's Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act provided for reductions in direct GME and IME FTE slots and authorized a subsequent redistribution of slots to other hospitals. On July 1, 2011, hospitals saw their FTE resident cap cut by 65% of their excess slots for GME and IME. Then, about 70% of the resident positions were redistributed to hospitals in states with the lowest medical-resident-to-population ratios, with the remaining 30% going to hospitals in rural areas and those in states facing the most severe health professional shortages.
According to the list from the CMS, 58 hospitals received new resident slots, with the IME pool totaling 628 positions and the GME pool totaling 726.
The American Association of Medical Colleges had expected the redistribution to be about 900 slots each for IME and GME, said Len Marquez, the association's director of government relations. The AAMC estimates a shortage of about 91,500 physicians in the U.S. by 2020.
"At a time when we need to be training an additional 4,000 a year, we're going to train an additional 200 a year," Marquez said, noting that he arrived at that number by dividing the number of new residency slots by the four-year length of the average residency program. "It doesn't get us anywhere close."
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