Barack Obama’s nominee for Health & Human Services Dept. (HHS) Secretary, Tom Daschle, says he hopes to bring more money to community health centers than ever before.
If confirmed to the post, he tells the Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP) Committee during his first confirmation hearing, he “strongly supports the goal” of increasing funding for health centers from $2 billion to $8 billion. And beyond that, he says, “I’d like to see if we could even surpass that goal.”
HELP Committee member Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) says he hopes to revive legislation that failed to pass last year which sought to boost funding through the Federally Qualified Health Center Program. Directing more dollars to community health centers, Sanders says, ultimately will save money in the larger health care system. And he adds, “We are trying to get some money in the stimulus package to support community health centers.”
Daschle says there is “no question” whether he is supportive of the concept of a significantly expanded community health center program–he is. And though he has no say over whether a health center funding boost goes into the upcoming stimulus package, he is “supportive of putting it in every vehicle we can.”
(article courtesy of the Community Health Funding Report)