Washington, Oregon to receive federal dollars for expansion of health-care coverage


Washington and Oregon are among 13 states to receive federal dollars for expansion of health-care coverage for uninsured people.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced $70.9 million in grants today. The grants are funded under the new State Health Access Program as part of the agency’s previous "State Planning Grant’ program.

That program enabled many states to develop innovative plans that increased health insurance coverage for their uninsured residents, she said.

"These grants build on the success of the earlier program," and will help more states provide affordable insurance to uninsured groups such as children and seniors.

Grants were awarded through a competitive process. Washington state is in line for $1,228,042 and Oregon could receive $9,978,200, according to a press release.

The grants, to be made over a 5-year period, require a 20 percent match unless a state demonstrates a financial hardship. In addition, states must show that they are able to sustain the program after federal funding has expired. The impact and results of state projects will be reported to Congress at the end of the grant period.

For how this grant will impact Washington, see Friday’s Union-Bulletin.


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