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How Gainesville’s Rep. Matt Dubnik hopes to reward medical professionals who train others
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State Rep. Matt Dubnik, R-Gainesville, left, introduced legislation that will offer a tax credit to medical professionals who train students. The bill was signed by Gov. Brian Kemp Thursday. (Courtesy Matt Dubnik)

Gov. Brian Kemp signed a bill Thursday that will give tax credits to community medical professionals who work with training students.

House Bill 287 was introduced by Rep. Matt Dubnik and co-sponsored by Rep. Lee Hawkins, both Gainesville Republicans.

Lee Hawkins
Lee Hawkins

The legislation will get rid of an income tax deduction currently offered to physicians who teach future doctors and replace it with a new income tax credit. Registered nurses and physician assistants who train students would also qualify. Only community medical professionals, not those who work in a university setting, would be able to get the tax credit.

The goal is to incentivize medical professionals in Georgia to train the next generation of health care providers, Dubnik said.

“With the primary care shortage in Georgia, this is just another tool in our tool belt to keep those future doctors here in Georgia,” he said.

Sheila Griffin, director of Foothills Area Health Education Center in Gainesville, said she was grateful for the legislation, noting that it expanded benefits to be offered to nurses and physician assistants, who were not eligible for the previous tax deduction.

“The passage of HB 287 provides a necessary resource to secure the community-based faculty to provide clinical training of medical/osteopathic students, physician assistant students and advanced practice registered nurse students,” she said in a statement.

Only professionals who work with students will be eligible, not those who train residents who have already graduated from medical school.

The tax credit will be based on the number of rotations the medical professional works with students. A rotation is defined as 160 hours working with a student. Physicians will receive a $500 credit for the first, second or third rotation in a year, then receive $1,000 for their fourth through tenth rotations. Registered nurses and physician assistants will receive $375 for their first, second or third rotation and $700 for their fourth through tenth rotations. The legislation limits medical professionals to 10 rotations a year.