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Capitol Briefs: Missouri health centers receiving $124M from COVID relief package  

  

Missouri’s community health centers are set to receive nearly $124.3 million from the recently-passed American Rescue Plan Act beginning in April. 

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HSS) announced this week the funding will go to 28 of the state’s health centers. The funds can be used for COVID-19 testing, treatment, and vaccinations in addition to care for vulnerable populations and expanding operational capacity. 

“Every American should have the security of knowing they have access to quality, affordable health care, especially as we face a pandemic that has exposed the disparities facing rural, minority, and lower-income communities,” HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra said. “The Biden administration is committed to getting help to those who need it most, and the communities hit hardest by COVID-19 will benefit from these critical investments.”

  • HHS’ Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) funds community health centers in rural and urban communities across the country. 
  • Centers serve 1 in 5 people in rural communities and 1 in 11 nationwide; more than 91 percent of patients are living at or below the federal poverty level, and nearly 63 percent of those served are of minorities, according to HHS. 

The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act contained various items, including the third round of stimulus for taxpayers and a Restaurant Revitalization Fund. Missouri’s education, agriculture, and Medicaid expansion are set to benefit from the package as well.