Press Releases

House Passes Funding Extensions for Critical Health Programs

ncludes Valadao Teaching Health Center Provisions

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Washignton, November 3, 2017 | Anna R. Vetter ((202) 815-1685) | comments
The House of Representatives passed legislation to to extend federal funding for critical health programs. Included in the package was Congressman Valadao’s CHAMPION Act.
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WASHINGTON – Today, the United States House of Representatives passed legislation to to extend federal funding for critical health programs.

H.R. 3922, the Championing Healthy Kids Act, combines funding extensions from multiple bills to ensure these vital programs remain available. Included in the legislative package was U.S. Congressman David G. Valadao’s (CA-21) Community Health and Medical Professionals Improve Our Nation (CHAMPION) Act, legislation originally introduced by Congressman David G. Valadao and Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers.

Valadao’s provisions expand the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education (THCGME) program and increases funding for residencies to $126.5 million, nearly double their current funding levels.

"I applaud my colleagues in the House of Representatives for passing this legislation which extends funding for the critical health care programs my constituents depend upon," stated Congressman Valadao. "The Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education (THCGME) program ensures our most disadvantaged communities have access to the medical professionals and health care services they deserve.”

In addition to a two-year extension of the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education (THCGME) program, H.R. 3922 includes a five-year extension of the children’s health Insurance Program (CHIP) as well as two-year extensions of the children’s health Insurance Program (CHIP), Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), the National Health Service Corps, Family-to-Family Health Information Centers, the Youth Empowerment Program, and the Personal Responsibility Education Program.

Furthermore, the legislative package includes medicaid funding for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

H.R. 3922, the Championing Healthy Kids Act passed the House of Representatives on Friday, November 3, 2017, by a vote of 242 -174.

BACKGROUND
  • Currently, the physician-to-population ratio in rural communities is stark. Only about 10% of physicians practice in these areas, even though almost a quarter of the population lives there
  • The THCGME program was created in 2010 to address the shortage of primary care physicians in rural and medically underserved communities
  • Currently, the program supports 742 residents at 59 Teaching Health Centers throughout the nation
  • Compared to doctors who train in the traditional Medicare program, those trained at Teaching Health Centers are 82% more likely to practice primary care, 20% more likely to work in rural communities, and 55% more likely to work in underserved areas
  • Six Teaching Health Centers are located in the State of California, including Clinica Sierra Vista in Bakersfield, California
More information on H.R. 2922 can be found here.

Congressman David G. Valadao represents the 21st Congressional District, which includes Kings County and portions of Fresno, Tulare, and Kern Counties.
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