Legislative statistics of the week
Betsy Z. Russell of the Spokesman-Review reported:
- Idaho has 6.7 medical residents per 100,000 people; the U.S. average is 28.1.
- 27 percent of Idaho’s physicians are over age 60 and will reach retirement age in the next 10 years
- Idaho ranks 49th in doctors per capita and in residents per capita
- Idaho ranks 50th in psychiatrists per capita
To address the shortage, the state has a new 10-year plan to address the shortage by expanding medical residence training and, over a decade, training 2,000 new physicians as opposed to the 520 currently expected.
The plan would help Idaho rise from 49th to 41st in the U.S. by 2028.
Idahoans want pre-K
Kevin Richert of Idaho Education News reported on a newly-released survey from the Association for the Education of Young Children:
- 76 percent of voters and 80 percent of parents of kids 5 and younger support state-funding for pre-K
- 76 percent of parents said they would use public pre-K
- 55 percent said preschool is currently unaffordable for most Idahoans
Pre-K funding was included in neither state superintendent Sherri Ybarra’s nor in Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter’s budgets and it has little support in the Legislature.