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Idaho board mulling funding boost for medical residencies

Idaho’s State Board of Education is considering a proposal designed to boost the number of medical residencies throughout the state.

Board members will meet Tuesday to vote on a plan that calls for an additional $5.2 million in state funding to increase residency programs, particularly in rural areas facing physician shortages.

It’s a move supporters say would help the Idaho College of Osteopathic Medicine, Idaho State and other schools seeking to place new graduates in residencies. That’s because the plan would increase the amount of medical residency programs from nine to 21 over the next 10 years.

Idaho currently ranks 49th among states in terms of physicians per capita and medical residents per capita.

If approved by the board, the proposal would then need to clear the Idaho Legislature and Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter.

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