Bay Area health centers get $18 million in grants

By Claire Veyriras and Laura Chilaka, California News Service

Washington — Bay Area health centers will receive almost $19 million to expand service to thousands of uninsured, immigrant and other needy patients, the Department of Health and Human Services announced Tuesday.

The grants are part of a $728 million nationwide program contained in the 2009 health care bill to help community health programs expand their capacity by building new facilities and renovating existing centers.

Nearly 1 in 6 dollars – roughly $122 million – will go to California, aimed primarily at rural areas with large, underserved populations. A clinic in Campo (San Diego County), a town of less than 3,000 residents a few miles from the Mexican border, was granted $5.5 million.

The White House distributed a list of grant winners state-by-state in order to highlight benefits stemming from the Affordable Care Act.

Among the largest recipients is Oakland’s Children’s Hospital & Research Center, which will receive almost $3 million. The money will be used to renovate and expand the Primary Care Clinic that treats low-income children typically on Medi-Cal.

Other Bay Area recipients include Lifelong Medical Care in Berkeley. The $5 million grant will mean the creation of a new clinic that will target mainly low-income communities in Alameda County and western Contra Costa County to treat people with HIV or mental or physical disabilities, the homeless, and Medi-Cal recipients.

Smaller grants include $361,000 to the San Francisco North East Medical Services, $320,000 to the San Mateo County Health Services Agency and $62,000 to Oakland Asian Health Teams.

California News Service is a journalism project of the University of California Washington Center and the UC Berkeley School of Journalism. cns@ucdc.edu

This article appeared on page C – 8 of the San Francisco Chronicle

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