For the first time in years, real hope stands on the horizon for addressing the physician shortage affecting Yuma and Arizona, thanks to citizens and lawmakers supporting an important piece of recent legislation
The passage of Senate Bill 1354 will enable more physicians to be trained here in Yuma, where our medical residency program represents a crucial investment in the health and wellbeing of our entire community. These state dollars promise real, long-term economic value and quality of life for our citizens. Physicians are far more likely to stay in the community where they complete their residency training. Our state lawmakers clearly understand the value of investing in and growing our own physicians, along with the fact that companies are attracted to areas with excellent medical care.
Yuma certainly needs these new physicians’ help. A considerable number of physicians throughout Yuma’s medical community are nearing retirement age. Overall, the physician shortage throughout Arizona represents one of the worst in the country.
My sincere thanks go to the local and state lawmakers who understand the importance of convenient access to quality healthcare and supported Senate Bill 1354. I also thank the many local citizens who reached out to lawmakers in recent weeks to support this funding that rural Arizona so badly needs.
The Yuma Sun should also be commended for its commitment to informing our community about this opportunity to help make a real difference in so many people’s lives.
Now, Yuma Regional Medical Center (YRMC) is ready to do our part in helping to address our community’s physician shortage. Restoring this critical state funding, which was cut more than a decade ago, enables YRMC to increase the number of physician residents we train through our Graduate Medical Education Program. Over the next 10 years, the number of graduating physicians will grow to 46, resulting in numerous additional benefits to the community. This expansion will lead to the creation of 539 new and high-paying jobs, along with an economic investment totaling $582 million for the Yuma community.
The people of Yuma deserve access to quality healthcare when and where they need that care. I am proud of how our community worked together to help increase that access for all of our neighbors living throughout this area. Your accomplishment will impact lives in our community for years to come.
Dr. Robert J. Trenschel, President CEO, Yuma Regional Medical Center