Governor signs Johnson’s bill to expand training opportunities for local medical students
Medical students, including those from the Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences in Yakima, will have better access for training opportunities within hospitals throughout Washington under a bill authored by Rep. Norm Johnson and signed into law Friday by Gov. Chris Gregoire.
Johnson, R-Yakima, says as part of their education, medical students must work for certain periods in rotation with hospitals and/or doctors to gain firsthand knowledge of the practice of medicine. These working periods are known as “clinical rotations.” Exclusive contracts between some schools and hospitals may shut out other medical students who need the experience. Johnson said he wanted to make sure students have equal access to clinical rotations throughout the state.
“We are rapidly losing doctors through retirements. We also have many areas throughout the state, especially in rural areas, that are in need of doctors. This bill will ensure medical students have access to clinical rotations so they get the vital experience required to become doctors,” said Johnson, ranking member of the House Health and Human Services Appropriations Committee. “It will also be particularly helpful to our medical students at Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences who are being sent to hospitals throughout the region for training.”
House Bill 1183 prohibits medical schools from entering into agreements with hospitals or physicians that would prevent them from allowing medical students to participate in clinical rotations.
“I greatly appreciate the help of Representative Eileen Cody, the chair of the Health Care and Wellness Committee, who worked with me to ensure passage of this important legislation,” added Johnson.
The measure takes effect in late July.
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VIDEO: See the bill signing below.
PHOTO #1: Rep. Norm Johnson stands next to Gov. Chris Gregoire following the signing on House Bill 1183, which will ensure equal access to clinical-rotation training opportunities at hospitals for medical students in Washington.
PHOTO #2: Pacific Northwest University of Health Sciences in Yakima, Washington.
###Washington State House Republican Communications