BOISE -- The 2014 budget proposal put forward by Gov. C.L. Butch Otter includes money to expand the number of seats for Idaho in a regional program that educates medical students.
In his State of the State address Monday, Otter outlines funding for five additional Idaho seats in WWAMI -- the partnership between Washington, Wyoming, Alaska, Montana and Idaho and the University of Washington.
Idaho already has 20 seats in the program. But Otter says that's insufficient considering population growth and shortage of doctors in rural corners of the state.
Otter says the five extra seats would go to students involved in the Targeted Rural and Under-Served Track -- a program designed to get physicians in smaller communities.
Otter cited a study showing that Idaho has the nation's sixth-oldest physician workforce.