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posted on Wednesday, April 15, 2015
SCPHCA Statement on H.R. 2
On April 14, the U.S. Senate passed H.R. 2, the Medicare and CHIP Reauthorization Act. The law includes critical funding for Community Health Centers, the National Health Service Corps and the Teaching Health Centers Graduate Medical Education Program.
"South Carolina's Health Centers and the more than 335,000 patients they serve are grateful to Congress for recognizing and continuing to invest in the community health center system of care," said Lathran Woodard, CEO of the South Carolina Primary Health Care Association. "We've been living under the uncertainty of the Primary Care Funding Cliff. Now, with the passing of HR 2, our dedicated health center staff can continue their work providing quality, affordable primary health care and preventive services to the medically underserved communities of South Carolina. HR 2 includes mandatory funding for the Health Centers Program for 2 years. We were pleased to see the bill pass with overwhelming bipartisan support."
Many South Carolina advocates visited Washington DC last month, made phone calls to their members of Congress, wrote letters, sent emails and gathered letters from local officials, partners and supporters to communicate to Congress that health centers play an important role in delivering care to many Americans. A 60-70% cut in funding would have forced some Health Centers to close their doors, layoff staff, and reduce the services they provide. However, the work of our advocates is far from over. There is still much work to be done, but today we can celebrate this achievement. The SCPHCA would like to thank our many supporters and advocates for their continued commitment.
South Carolina receives federal funding to provide comprehensive care to more than 335,000 patients. South Carolina's Community Health Centers are located in areas where care is needed, and together they employee approximately 2,255 full time staff.