Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced $2 million in grants to be awarded to community health centers in Alabama due to the new health care law, the Affordable Care Act.
Grants from the Affordable Care Act will help build and expand health centers, create jobs, and expand access to an additional 860,000 patients nationwide, according to a White House press release.
“President Obama’s health care law is making community health centers in Alabama stronger,” Secretary Sebelius said. “For many Americans, community health centers are the major source of care that ranges from prevention to treatment of chronic diseases. This investment will expand our ability to provide high-quality care to millions of people while supporting good paying jobs in communities across the country.”
Funding totaling more than $728 million across the United States will support renovation and construction projects, boosting health centers’ ability to care for additional patients and creating jobs, according to the Obama administration.
The awards are part of a series of capital investments that are made available to community health centers through the Affordable Care Act, which provides $9.5 billion to expand services over five years and $1.5 billion to support major construction and renovation projects at community health centers.
According to a new report released Tuesday, the health care law has already supported the construction and renovation of 190 health centers and the creation of 67 new health centers across the country, and will support the construction and renovation of more than 485 health centers and the creation of 245 new health centers over the next two years.
Overall, since the beginning of 2009, employment at community health centers nationwide has increased by 15 percent, and primarily due to the Affordable Care Act and the Recovery Act, community health centers are serving nearly 3 million additional patients today and will serve an additional 1.3 million additional new patients in the next two years.
The announcement made Tuesday is for awards from two capital programs for community health centers. One will provide approximately $629 million to 171 existing health centers across the country for longer-term projects to expand their facilities, improve existing services, and serve more patients. This program will expand access to an additional 860,000 patients. The second set of awards will provide approximately $99.3 million to 227 existing health centers to address pressing facility and equipment needs.
“Health centers improve the health of the nation’s communities by ensuring access to primary health care services,” Sebelius said. “Currently, more than 8,500 service delivery sites around the country deliver care to nearly 19.5 million patients regardless of their ability to pay.”
View a list of Building Capacity Program awards by state here.
View a list of Immediate Facility Improvement Program awards by state here.
© 2012, Glynn Wilson. All rights reserved.