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HHS Awards $159.1 Million to Support Health Care Workforce Training

Posted Aug 03 2010 10:01pm

Funds will Support Programs to Train Nurses, Geriatric Specialists and Improve the Performance and Recruitment of Underrepresented Minority Students

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today will announce $159.1 million in grants to health care workforce training programs.  These grants build on the multimillion dollar investments made under the Affordable Care Act and Recovery Act to strengthen and grow our primary care workforce. The grants will target three types of programs: Nursing Workforce Development programs; interdisciplinary geriatric education and training programs; and Centers of Excellence programs for underrepresented minority students.

“We cannot build a healthier America if our country continues to face a growing health professions shortage,” said Secretary Sebelius. “A well-trained, educated and diverse workforce is critical to meeting future health care demands, and to reforming the nation’s health care system.”

“These grants target key workforce needs,” said Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Administrator Mary K. Wakefield, Ph.D., R.N. “In addition to training new health care workers, these grants will support efforts to better prepare health care workers to care for our diverse and aging population, improving health care quality for all Americans.”

Nursing Workforce Development

Nursing Workforce Development programs will receive $106 million in grants to support all levels of nursing education.

  • Advanced Education Nursing ($42 million) supports 153 infrastructure grants to increase advanced education to train nurses as primary care providers and/or nursing faculty.
  • Advanced Education Nursing Traineeship ($16 million) supports 351 schools of nursing and individuals preparing for careers as nurse specialists, requiring advanced education.
  • Nurse Anesthetist Traineeship ($1.3 million) funds 83 nurse anesthetist training programs to provide traineeships that pay tuition, books, fees, and a living stipend for registered nurses who have completed at least 12 months in a master’s or doctoral nurse anesthesia program.
  • Nurse Education, Practice, Quality and Retention ($29.9 million) supports 108 infrastructure grants to expand the capacity of the nursing pipeline, promote career mobility for individuals in nursing, prepare more nurses at the baccalaureate level, and provide continuing education training to enhance the quality of patient care.
  • Nursing Workforce Diversity ($14.3 million) supports 44 grants that increase nursing education opportunities for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, including racial and ethnic minorities underrepresented among registered nurses.
  • Faculty Development: Integrated Technology into Nursing Education and Practice Initiative ($2.5 million) supports nine grants for faculty development projects in information and other technologies to expand the capacity of collegiate schools of nursing to educate students for 21st century health care practice.

Interdisciplinary Geriatric Education and Training

Eighty-five awards totaling $29.5 million will fund three geriatric education and training programs at accredited health professions schools.

  • Geriatric Education Centers (GEC) ($17.2 million) supports 45 awards to improve training of health professionals in geriatrics; develop curricula relating to treating health problems of the elderly; and support faculty training and continuing education for health professionals in geriatric care.
  • Geriatric Training for Physicians, Dentists, and Behavioral and Mental Health Professionals (GTPD) ($8.1 million) supports 13 grants to geriatric training projects that will train health professionals who plan to teach geriatric medicine, geriatric dentistry, or geriatric behavioral or mental health.
  • Comprehensive Geriatric Education Program (CGEP) ($4.2 million) supports 27 grants for projects to train and educate individuals in providing geriatric care for the elderly, including curriculum development, faculty training and continuing education for geriatric providers.

Centers for Excellence Grants

Eighteen awards totaling $23.6 million were announced to support Centers of Excellence programs that are designed to improve the recruitment and performance of underrepresented minority students preparing for health professions careers.

“The program supports activities to develop an educational pipeline to enhance academic performance of underrepresented minority students. It supports underrepresented minority faculty development, facilitates research on health issues particularly affecting underrepresented minority groups, and provides training to students at community-based health facilities for providing health services to underrepresented minority individuals." The awardees are schools of allopathic medicine, osteopathic medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, and allied health (including designated Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs); graduate programs in behavioral health; and other public and nonprofit health or educational organizations.

Secretary Sebelius will highlight the grants, which include both new and continuing grants, at the National Health Service Corps Conference today. The National Health Service Corps is another HRSA program which has seen new resources under the Obama administration to invest in America’s health care workforce in underrepresented areas.

State by state charts of the grant awards are available at http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2010pres/08/state_charts.html .

For more information on HRSA’s health professions programs, go to http://bhpr.hrsa.gov/

The Health Resources and Services Administration is part of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. HRSA is the primary federal agency responsible for improving access to health care services for people who are uninsured, isolated, or medically vulnerable. For more information about HRSA and its programs, visit www.hrsa.gov

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