|Hello NRHA members,|
This week, the Senate Appropriations Committee (SAC) released the text of their nine remaining appropriations bills, including the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies (L-HHS) bill. Below is an update on NRHA’s fiscal year (FY) 2022 appropriations requests.
Both the House Appropriations Committee (HAC) and SAC recommended increasing funding for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) rural health programs, which are administered by the Federal Office of Rural Health Policy (FORHP). The HAC recommended increasing funding to $70.7 million above the FY 2021 enacted level, and the SAC recommended increasing funding to $73.2 million above the FY 2021 enacted level. NRHA is extremely pleased that both Congressional appropriations committees are seeking to provide more funding for rural health programs. However, we will continue to advocate that both committees match NRHA’s requested allocations for individual programs.
The HAC and SAC matched NRHA’s requested funding allocations for the Rural Maternal and Obstetric Management Strategies (RMOMS) program ($10 million) and Rural Residency Planning and Development (RRPD) program ($12.7 million). Additionally, the HAC and SAC included report language to encourage HRSA to expand the current program to include RTTs in obstetrics and gynecology and request a report in the fiscal year 2023 Congressional Budget Justification on the progress made to date and efforts to expand RTTs in obstetrics and gynecology.
The HAC matched NRHA’s requested funding allocations for the Medicare Rural Hospital Flexibility (Flex) program ($61.2 million) and Rural Emergency Hospital (REH) Technical Assistance (TA) program ($10 million) but did not match NRHA’s requested funding allocations for the Rural Provider Modernization Technical Assistance program ($8 million) and Rural Provider Modernization Grants ($13 million). The SAC did not match NRHA’s funding allocation for any of these programs. Neither the HAC or SAC matched NRHA’s requested funding allocations for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Hospital Technical Assistance (TA) program ($5 million.
Below is a chart of FY 2022 requests and allocations: