The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Tuesday awarded nearly $25 million to improve and strengthen access to school-based health services in communities across the country.
Awards will support local partnerships between schools and health centers to provide children and youth the comprehensive physical and mental health care they need.
“When students are healthy, they are able to learn, grow and thrive,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “Our nation’s youth have endured many challenges navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, and we are committed to ensuring they have the support they need. Today we’re investing in school-based health care to meet families where they are and make sure children have easy access to care – including mental health support.”
Health centers will use this funding to reduce disparities and improve access to care by increasing the number of young people receiving essential health care, including mental health services. Health centers will also use these funds for activities such as community and patient outreach, health education, and translation support.
The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to ensuring children have the physical and behavioral health services and supports they need to build resilience and thrive. Tuesday’s announcement advances the joint effort of Secretary Becerra and U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona to expand school-based health services, as outlined in their joint letter to Governors in March 2022. It is also part of the ongoing HHS-wide effort to strengthen our nation’s mental health.
The $25 million awarded Tuesday builds on the $5 million investment in school-based care that HRSA awarded to health centers in September 2021 to expand access to school-based services.
One in nine children in the United States accesses primary health care through a HRSA-funded health center. In 2020, 41 percent of health centers provided services to children and youth at over 3,200 school-based sites.
To locate a HRSA-supported health center, visit: https://findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov.
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