FY2012 Omnibus Appropriations Act Allows for Expansion of Community Health Centers to Meet Pressing Need Around the Country
This was released on 12/16........
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The FY2012 Omnibus Appropriations Act released last night funds the Health Centers program at a total programmatic level of $2.78 billion. This legislation, were it to become law, provides funding to maintain current levels of federal grant support and all existing operations at Health Centers, and will also extend access to care to nearly 1.5 million additional people in need of care. An estimated 60 million Americans -- many of whom have health insurance -- do not have access to primary medical care because of a shortage of providers in their communities.
Importantly, this legislation allows the full Community Health Center Fund increase to be used to support expansion of the Health Centers program, consistent with the original intent of the Fund. This legislation would allow HHS to fund applications from among the more than 1,800 pending at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for new and expanded health centers.
"At a time when health centers are seeing ever increasing demand for their services in rural and urban communities across the country, we are grateful that Congress has responded with this bipartisan bill which begins to address that need," said Tom Van Coverden, President and CEO of the National Association of Community Health Centers. “Health centers stand ready to serve even more patients who need access to their care and appreciate the bipartisan efforts of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees and in particular the Labor-HHS Subcommittee leaders for their efforts to support health centers in this legislation.”
This year, bipartisan Health Centers program funding letters were led by Senators Debbie Stabenow (MI) and John Boozman (AR) and by Representatives Gus Bilirakis (FL) and Frank Pallone (NJ).
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