HHS: $81.7 Million to Expand Services
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced, May 28, the release of $81.7 million to expand services offered at the nation’s health centers. On the same day—100 days after the signing of the Recovery Act—HHS also awarded $25.6 million in non-Recovery Act grants to expand medical capacity at 54 existing health centers, helping an additional 230,000 individuals in 25 states receive primary health care services, the agency said.
The grants, funded through the Health Center Program, have already helped more than 17 million individuals by providing access to high-quality, family-oriented, comprehensive primary and preventive health care. The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), an agency within HHS, oversees the Health Center Program.
The Recovery Act provides $2 billion for grants to health centers over a two-year period. Of that, $500 million will be used to support new health center sites and service areas, increase services at existing sites, and address spikes in uninsured populations.
An additional $1.5 billion will be used to support construction, renovation and equipment, including health information technology (HIT) systems, in health centers and health center controlled networks.
HHS has already awarded approximately $155 million in Recovery Act grant funds to support 126 community health center sites across the country. The 126 New Access Point (NAP) grants were awarded to applicants that were approved but unfunded in 2008. These grants will provide access to health center care for 750,000 people in 39 states and two territories.
HHS also awarded $338 million in Increased Demand for Services grants for health centers. Health centers will use these funds to provide care to more than 2 million additional patients over the next two years, including approximately 1 million uninsured people, and create and retain approximately 6,500 health center jobs.
The non-Recovery Act grants awarded today include $25.6 million to expand medical capacity at 54 existing health centers, helping an additional 230,000 individuals in 25 states receive primary health care services. The remaining $56.1 million will supplement all health centers’ base grant awards to offset rising costs associated with maintaining current service levels.