SENATE DOCKET, NO. 1367        FILED ON: 1/14/2009

SENATE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 799



The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the Year Two Thousand Nine



An Act establishing a special commission to study physician recruitment and workforce development in Massachusetts..


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

SECTION 1. There shall be a special commission to investigate, study and evaluate methods to increase the recruitment and retention of physicians in the Commonwealth.  The commission shall address, but not be limited to, the definition and designation of understaffed medical specialties, health professional shortage areas and other medically underserved areas; identification of existing laws, regulations, policies, contracting and reimbursement practices and which may create disincentives to physician recruitment and retention; and, the establishment of a loan forgiveness program, tax credits or other financial incentives for physicians to practice in the Commonwealth.

The special commission shall consist of the secretary of the executive office of economic development or his designee who shall serve as chairman; the commissioner of the department of public health or his designee; the executive director of the board of registration in medicine or his designee; the House and Senate chairs of the health care financing committee; and one representative named by each of the following:  the Massachusetts Medical Society; the Massachusetts Hospital Association; the Massachusetts League of Community Health Centers; the Massachusetts Association of Health Plans; Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts; the Massachusetts Conference of Teaching Hospitals; a physician president of a medical staff of a community hospital, a primary care physician; and a consumer representative named by the commission’s chairman.  The special commission may consult with other government agencies, both federal and state, as well as members of the health care community and the general public. 

The special commission shall submit a report, including any draft recommendations or legislation to the House and Senate within 12 months of the day that this act is passed into law.