July 02, 2021
ASA Commends Reintroduction of the REDI Act
On June 30, the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) joined a coalition of health care organizations in commending Representative Brian Babin, DDS (R-TX-36) and Representative Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA-06) for reintroducing the Resident Education Deferred Interest Act (REDI Act). The bill would allow borrowers to qualify for interest-free deferment on their student loans while serving in a medical or dental internship or residency program. ASA believes the REDI Act will help to address physician workforce needs, make medical education more affordable, and boost health care outcomes across the nation.
The letter emphasizes that the cost of graduate-level medical education is substantial for physicians in training. Physicians in residency receive very low compensation and are often unable to begin repaying student loan debt immediately. Although, these residents can qualify to have their payments halted during residency through deferment or forbearance processes, the loans continue to accrue interest that accumulates to the overall loan balance.
Enactment of the REDI Act is an important part of student loan repayment reform. This bill would prevent medical and dental residents from being penalized during residency and save them thousands of dollars in interest. Providing interest accrual relief during residency also would make the concepts of opening practices in underserved areas or entering faculty or research more attractive and affordable to residents.
ASA will continue to monitor developments pertaining to this legislation.
Read the full thank you letter here.