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US Department of Health and Human Services Awards $5.3 Million to Alaska Clinics

US Department of Health and Human Services

The US Department of Health and Human Services announced last week it’s awarding $295 million in Affordable Care Act funds to health centers.  27 health centers in Alaska will see a portion of that funding.  

Alaska will be receiving over $5.3 million to support health centers across the state.  The Bristol Bay health Corporation and the Borough of Bristol bay are among those receiving grants.  The grants are meant to help the centers expand services. 

16,000 people in Alaska signed up for individual insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act on the states federally run health insurance marketplace during the first open enrollment period.

Director of communications for the health Resources and Services Administration in the US DHHS Martin Kramer says the funds can be used in a variety of ways.

“Awards can be used to increase the hours that health centers stay open, they can be used to hire staff such as doctors, dentists, behavioral health specialists or support staff, and they’re to be used to help treat new patients. Of the 27 awards that were made to health centers in the state of Alaska, the health centers self-report that they will hire 41 new staff people and they expect to treat and additional 7,774 people.”

Kramer says all health centers in the US were eligible for the grants. He says these centers had to apply for the funding but it was not a competition.  Other cities receiving funding include Wrangell, Anchorage, Bethel, Glennallen and Fairbanks. 

Bristol Bay Health Corporation, which declined to comment, will receive $206,000 and the Bristol Bay Borough will receive $190,000.