Advocacy Brief: Senate Approves National Health Service Corps Reauthorization
On July 21, 2008 the Senate unanimously approved S. 901, a bill that reauthorizes the National Health Service Corps (NHSC) through fiscal year 2012. The bill authorizes funding from $131.5 million increasing each year to $185.6 million in fiscal year 2012. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2008 provided $123.5 million for the NHSC. The bill removes the current provision that requires health centers and clinics to demonstrate eligibility as a health professions shortage area every 6 years. The bill also requires that each qualifying site demonstrate "willingness to support or facilitate mentorship, professional development, and training opportunities for Corps members," and directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services to facilitate professional relationships among Corps members and other health professionals. The reauthorization is part of a package that also reauthorizes the Community Health Centers Program and the Rural Health Care Programs.
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