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HHS awards funds to increase access to primary care at health centers

(U.S. Department of Health & Human Services) Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell announced [Friday] $295 million in Affordable Care Act funding to 1,195 health centers in every U.S. State, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Pacific Basin to expand primary care services.
[The] awards enable  health centers to increase access to comprehensive primary health care services by hiring an estimated 4,750 new staff including new health care providers, staying open for longer hours, and expanding the care they provide to include new services such as oral health, behavioral health, pharmacy, and vision services.  These investments will help health centers reach an estimated 1.5 million new patients nationwide, including over 137,000 oral health patients and more than 38,000 mental and substance abuse patients.
“Health centers are a key part of how the Affordable Care Act is working to improve access to care for millions of Americans,” said Secretary Burwell. “These funds will enable health centers to provide high-quality primary health care to more people including the newly insured, many of whom may be accessing primary care for the first time.”
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