COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced Thursday that more than $95 million of federal funds will soon be distributed to community health centers across South Carolina.
That includes five facilities in the Midlands:
- Eau Claire Cooperative Health Center in Columbia will receive $11,992,750
- Genesis Healthcare, Inc. in Columbia will receive $1,892,500
- The Primary Health Care Association of S.C. in Columbia will receive $1,380,125
- Family Health Centers, Inc. in Orangeburg will receive $4,262,875
- Tandem Health SC in Sumter will receive $3,621,625
The funds are part of the American Rescue Plan, which aims to improve COVID-19 response in underserved communities.
The HHS reports that community health centers serve 1 in 5 people living in rural communities. And more than 91% of the centers’ patients are individuals or families living at or below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines.
Health centers can use the money to support and expand COVID-19 vaccination, testing, and treatment for vulnerable populations.
The effort is expected to help ensure hard-hit populations have access to the vaccine and additional care services during this pandemic.
“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,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “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.”
The HHS says the Health Resources and Services Administration will be awarding the funds to the centers in April.