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IUSM students meet with lawmakers; input sought for forum discussion April 15

Apr. 10, 2014

Two medical students from the IU School of Medicine's regional medical education centers participated in six meetings on Capitol Hill April 3 to advocate for continued federal support for graduate medical education.

Larry Bucshon

Meagan King, a fourth-year medical student at IUSM-Northwest; Congressman Larry Bucshon, M.D.; and Ian Stamps, a third-year medical student at IUSM-Evansville. | PHOTO COURTESY OF IU GOVERNMENT RELATIONS

Meagan King, a fourth-year medical student at IUSM-Northwest, and Ian Stamps, a third-year medical student at IUSM-Evansville, shared opinions about the need for sustained graduate medical education funding with lawmakers, including U.S. Rep. Larry Bucshon, M.D., a member of the U.S. House Republican Doctor's Caucus and U.S. House Committees on Education & Workforce, Transportation & Infrastructure, and Science, Space and Technology.

In addition to meeting with members and staff from the Indiana congressional delegation, the students met with staff to the two bicameral committees with jurisdiction and oversight of Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services: the Senate Finance Committee and the House Ways and Means Committee.

In each meeting, King and Stamps made the case that both direct and indirect graduate medical education payments are necessary to produce highly trained physicians. They also voiced concern over a proposal to cap the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program at $57,500 in the next fiscal year.

Staff members of the House Ways and Means Committee indicated graduate medical education is likely to be a "front-burner" topic over the next year, extending into the next Congressional session, making the meetings especially timely.

Doug Wasitis, assistant vice president for federal relations at IU, accompanied the students during their rounds at the Capital.

In addition, Dr. Buschon and State Rep. Tim Brown, M.D., will be in Indianapolis Tuesday, April 15, for a discussion session with IUSM faculty and students. This forum, which will take place from 2 to 3:30 p.m. at the Glick Eye Institute, Room 103, aims to help the legislators gain insight into the motivations of medical students, including why they chose to pursue a career in medicine, why they chose the IU School of Medicine, what area of medicine they are pursing and where they plan to practice.

Attending students will be asked to complete a short survey in advance. Students who wish to participate should contact Jennifer Boehm at jrboehm@iupui.edu or 317-278-2664.

Larry Buschon, M.D., represents Indiana’s 8th Congressional District which covers southwest Indiana from Terre Haute down to Evansville. He received his medical degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago and spent his life specializing in cardiothoracic surgery. He was elected to Congress in 2011.

Tim Brown, M.D., represents Indiana’s 41st District in the Indiana House of Representatives. The 41st District covers parts of Boone, Montgomery and Tippecanoe counties. Dr. Brown is an emergency room physician at St. Elizabeth hospital and an assistant clinical professor of medicine at the IU School of Medicine. He received his medical degree from the University of Illinois. He was first elected to represent Indiana’s 41st District in 1994 and chairs the House Ways and Means committee.

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