Senate panel approves HHS spending bill; urged to prioritize access to quality care

AHA News Now

A subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee today approved a fiscal year 2015 appropriations bill that provides $156.77 billion in base discretionary budget authority for the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education departments, the same as the FY 2014 level. According to the committee, the bill includes $265 million for Children’s Hospitals Graduate Medical Education, the same level as in FY 2014. Details on other health care programs could be released Thursday, when the full committee is tentatively scheduled to consider the legislation. AHA yesterday urged Senate appropriators to reject the president’s proposed cuts to Children's Hospitals GME, rural health programs and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and support the maximum possible funding for Health Resources and Services Administration programs to address workforce challenges. AHA also urged the subcommittee to increase funding for the Hospital Preparedness Program; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Maternal and Child Health Block Grants; the Healthy Start program; Ryan White HIV/AIDS activities; Emergency Medical Services for Children; and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

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