UPDATE: Kentucky to receive an additional $6.3 million in funding for rural COVID vaccination efforts

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UPDATE POSTED JULY 23, 2021 AT 10:55 A.M.

WASHINGTON (WTVQ/Press Release) – Kentucky will be receiving $6,379,712 in federal funding to further help rural health clinics with vaccination efforts as the Delta variant presents more challenges.

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130 Rural Health Clinics will use the funding to increase vaccine confidence and outreach efforts.  Each clinic will be granted around $49,500. The funding was made available by the American Rescue Plan and is being administered by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) through the Rural Health Clinic Vaccine Confidence (RHCVC) Program.

“Rural health clinics play a crucial role in supporting our national vaccination effort to defeat COVID-19,” said U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra. “This funding will give trusted messengers in rural communities the tools they need to counsel patients on how COVID-19 vaccines can help protect them and their loved ones.”

“Rural Health Clinics are critical partners in addressing health equity gaps, including those related to vaccination,” said HRSA Acting Administrator Diana Espinosa. “This funding will help Rural Health Clinics address the barriers people in their communities face to getting vaccinated and build confidence in vaccines through trusted resources for health care services and health information.”

ORIGINAL STORY POSTED JULY 13, 2021 AT 6:52 P.M.

WASHINGTON (WTVQ/Press Release) – The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is providing Kentucky with $12,143,672 to support COVID response efforts in rural areas.

While vaccinations continue to increase, this funding through the Small Rural Hospital Improvement Program (SHIP) will go to 47 small rural hospitals in Kentucky for COVID-19 testing and mitigation, important parts of the COVID response especially as the country faces new variants.

“The Biden Administration recognizes the important role that small rural hospitals have in closing the equity gap and ensuring that rural Americans can protect themselves and their communities from COVID-19,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “Today’s funding will help small rural hospitals continue to serve their communities in this critical role by expanding their COVID-19 testing capacity and mitigation efforts.”

State Offices of Rural Health, which work with small rural hospitals to implement quality and operational improvement efforts, will receive the funding announced today to distribute to eligible small rural hospitals in their state. Small rural hospitals—those with fewer than 50 beds and Critical Access Hospitals—are key health care access points and trusted community resources. Hospitals will use the funds to maintain or increase COVID-19 testing, expand access to testing for rural residents, and tailor mitigation efforts to reflect the needs of local communities.

“Our state-based SHIP grantees are important partners in helping to support small rural hospitals,” said HRSA Acting Administrator Diana Espinosa. “HRSA is committed to mitigating the spread of the virus in rural areas by supporting and empowering local providers to tailor their responses to COVID-19 to what works for their communities.”

To view a state-by-state breakdown of this funding visit: https://www.hrsa.gov/rural-health/rural-hospitals/arp-covid19-awards.