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H.R. 3890: Physician Assistant Education Public Health Initiatives Act of 2021


The text of the bill below is as of Jun 15, 2021 (Introduced).


I

117th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 3890

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

June 15, 2021

introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce

A BILL

To amend the Public Health Service Act to address physician assistant training needs, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Physician Assistant Education Public Health Initiatives Act of 2021.

2.

Expanding clinical training opportunities

The Public Health Service Act is amended by inserting after section 749A of such Act (42 U.S.C. 293l–1) the following:

749A–1.

Expanding clinical training opportunities

(a)

In general

The Secretary, acting through the Administrator of the Health Resources and Services Administration, shall award grants to physician assistant education programs to establish or expand clinical education and training for physician assistants at underserved sites including Federally qualified health centers, critical access hospitals, and rural health clinics.

(b)

Allocation for rural sites

Of the amount made available to carry out this section for a fiscal year, the Secretary shall allocate 50 percent of such amount for clinical education and training at underserved sites that are located in rural areas.

(c)

Priority

In awarding grants under this section, the Secretary shall give priority to physician assistant education programs proposing to establish or expand clinical rotations for physician assistants in pediatrics, women’s health, or behavioral health.

(d)

Reporting to congress

The Secretary shall—

(1)

not later than March 1, 2024, submit an interim report to the Congress on the implementation of this section; and

(2)

not later than March 1, 2027, submit a final report to the Congress on such implementation.

(e)

Authorization of appropriations

To carry out this section, there is authorized to be appropriated $5,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2022 through 2026.

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3.

Promoting telehealth education for physician assistant students

The Public Health Service Act is amended by inserting after section 749A–1 of such Act, as added by section 2, the following:

749A–2.

Promoting telehealth education for physician assistant students

(a)

In general

The Secretary, acting through the Administrator of the Health Resources and Services Administration, shall award grants to physician assistant education programs to develop and implement telehealth curricula for students who are enrolled at such programs.

(b)

Use of funds

Recipients of grants under this section shall use the grants to develop and implement curricula that improve student knowledge on telehealth delivery, including—

(1)

effective patient communication principles;

(2)

legal requirements pertaining to privacy and security;

(3)

social, cultural, physical, and linguistic barriers to the use of telehealth services; and

(4)

patient safety and criteria for care escalation during a telehealth encounter.

(c)

Authorization of appropriations

To carry out this section, there is authorized to be appropriated $3,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2022 through 2026.

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4.

Research To enhance physician assistant education

The Public Health Service Act is amended by inserting after section 749A–2 of such Act, as added by section 3, the following:

749A–3.

Research To enhance physician assistant education

(a)

In general

The Secretary, acting through the Administrator of the Health Resources and Services Administration, shall award grants to eligible entities to fund research on physician assistant education enhancement and innovation.

(b)

Use of funds

Recipients of grants under this section shall use the grants to fund research on physician assistant education enhancement and innovation, including—

(1)

the use of simulation to mitigate clinical training site shortages;

(2)

barriers to integrating physician assistant students into the delivery of telehealth services; or

(3)

recruitment and retention strategies for faculty and students underrepresented in physician assistant education programs and the physician assistant profession.

(c)

Report requirement

Recipients of grants under this section shall provide to the Secretary with respect to each year covered by the grant a report on the activities conducted using such funds, including—

(1)

the number of researchers supported during such year by such recipient using such funds;

(2)

a list of the researchers counted under paragraph (1), organized by researcher, including—

(A)

the research topic of each such researcher; and

(B)

citations to published clinical and scientific research by each such researcher that is attributable to support under this section;

(3)

an evaluation of the benefits of grants under this section; and

(4)

any other information the Secretary may request.

(d)

Definitions

In this section:

(1)

Eligible entity

The term eligible entity means an organization that has demonstrated expertise in physician assistant education and is—

(A)

a nonprofit organization; or

(B)

an institution of higher education.

(2)

Physician assistant education

The term physician assistant education means selecting, educating, and graduating students in accredited graduate physician assistant education programs.

(e)

Authorization of appropriations

To carry out this section, there is authorized to be appropriated $2,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2022 through 2026.

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