Last week, the U.S Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that they were distributing over $14 million in federal grant money to 45 school-based health centers around the country. School-based health centers are an asset to the communities they serve because they enhance care and increase quality healthcare access to children in the community. Along with serving more children, the money will also create jobs for individuals across the country as many clinics will need to renovate their facilities and/or create new sites.
In a press release by HHS, Secretary Kathleen Sebelius stated that the funds will lead to 53,000 additional children served in 29 of the states who are receiving a portion of the grant funds. Sebelius also notes that the funds are just another reason to be thankful for the new healthcare reform laws being set in place which has already awarded Wisconsin $65.6 million in new grant funding. The healthcare law devoted $200 million in funds for 2010-2013 to school based health centers alone which addresses capital needs for school-based health centers in order to maximize their capacity to serve children. This announcement serves as the second round of grant money awarded across the country in order to meet this goal.
Children’s Health System – a Wisconsin school-based health center – was awarded $418,662 in federal grant money to go towards improving and expanding their program. One achievement of school-based health centers, like Children’s Health System, is the ability to provide children increased coordination in their healthcare by providing a combination of primary care, mental health, dental care and other services such as health education and nutrition information.
The Wisconsin Alliance for Women’s Health is pleased by opportunity to move a step forward in meaningful healthcare reform implementation in Wisconsin.