Write A Letter: Urge Congress to Support the Allied Health Workforce Diversity Act
It is vital to ensure the makeup of the healthcare workforce in the United States evolves to mirror the makeup of the population. Having a more diverse workforce helps close the gap on provider shortages, while improving the ability of the health care workforce to effectively address the health care needs of all Americans.
The bipartisan Allied Health Workforce Diversity Act (H.R. 3320/S. 1679) introduced by Reps. Bobby Rush (IL-01) and Markwayne Mullin (OK-02) in the House, and Sens. Bob Casey (PA), and Lisa Murkowski (AK) in the Senate, provides grant funding to increase opportunities for individuals who are from underrepresented backgrounds, including students from racial and ethnic minorities, in the professions of occupational therapy, physical therapy, respiratory therapy, speech language pathology, and audiology.
This legislation creates a program administered by the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) and funding to ensure the flexibility to adapt to changes to what groups are underrepresented to grow with a changing health workforce. The funding proposed in this bill allows the higher education programs for these professions to strengthen and expands the comprehensive use of evidence-based strategies shown to increase the recruitment, enrollment, retention, and graduation of students from underrepresented and disadvantaged backgrounds. These strategies include outreach to the community, the creation or expansion of mentorship and tutoring programs, and providing scholarship and stipends to students.
Please contact your Members of Congress and ask them to co-sponsor this bill today!