ACA $150M grants to expand community health centers

The Obama administration announced $150 million in new grants through the Affordable Care Act that will help more than a million patients across the country access community-based healthcare, The Hill reported.

The money, part of an $11 billion initiative for community health centers under the healthcare reform law, will allow 236 facilities to hire medical staff and in turn, extend care to an additional 1.25 million patients, and establish new health centers, according to the article.

The grant announcement--the largest allocation to community health centers since 2011--comes in the wake of a difficult start for the healthcare law, implemented Oct. 1, with critical feedback and scrutiny surrounding the problem-plagued website.

With so much negative press surrounding the online portal, many people don't realize all the different parts of the reform, Mary Wakefield, Ph.D., R.N., administrator of the federal Health Resources and Services Administration, told The Hill.

The money comes after concerns that community health centers didn't have enough funding to improve services and level of care to keep new patients. Community health centers have been struggling for years to attend to uninsured and poor patients, but once the ACA takes full effect on Jan. 1, 2014, the 1,200 federal-funded centers plan to help enroll as many as 10 million newly insured individuals within a year, FierceHealthcare previously reported.  

To learn more:
- here's The Hill article