HHS grants $267 million for more regional extension centers, thousands of jobs

By Diana Manos
02:30 PM
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The Department of Health and Human Services announced Tuesday awards for more than $267 million to 28 non-profit organizations to establish Health Information Technology Regional Extension Centers.

The grants from the $2 billion allotted for healthcare IT under the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and follows 32 HHS for grants issued last February for regional extension centers (RECs).

HHS intends for the grants to help grow the emerging health information technology industry and to support tens of thousands of jobs including nursing, pharmacy technicians,  IT technicians and trainers, said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

"Healthcare in our country is community-based," she said. "Today's awards represent our ongoing commitment to make sure that health providers have the necessary support within their communities to maximize the use of health IT to improve the care they provide to their patients."

With this round of awards, HHS has funded a total of 60 RECs, expected to support some 100,000 primary care providers and hospitals within two years. All REC awardees will have an opportunity to apply for a two-year expansion supplemental award,  Sebelius said.

The supplemental awards would ensure that health IT support services are available to more than 2,000 of the nation's critical access hospitals and rural hospitals, both defined as having 50 beds or less, according to Sebelius.

Approximately $25 million will be available through the supplemental expansion program, she said.

David Blumenthal, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology said, "RECs are a vital part of our overall efforts to improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare through the effective use of health IT."

 The full list of grantees follows on the next page...

 

Grantees in the second series of awards (announced April 6, 2010) Federal Share

Alaska eHealth Network, Anchorage, AK

$3,632,357

University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL

$7,519,969

Arizona Health-e Connection, Phoenix, AZ

$10,791,644

Local Initiative Health Authority for Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, CA

$15,625,910

eHealthConnecticut, Inc., Rocky Hill, CT

$5,749,309

National Indian Health Board, Washington, DC

$15,625,910

Quality Insights of Delaware, Inc., Wilmington, DE

$5,859,716

University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL

$7,669,328

Community Health Centers Alliance, Inc, St. Petersburg, FL

$10,982,866

University of South Florida, Tampa, FL

$5,884,132

Hawaii Health Information Exchange, Honolulu, HI

$5,859,716

University of Kentucky Research Foundation, Lexington, KY

$6,005,467

Louisiana Health Care Quality Forum, Baton Rouge, LA

$6,207,802

HealthInfoNet, Manchester, ME

$4,777,483

Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients, Baltimore, MD

$5,535,423

eQHealth Solutions, Inc , Baton Rouge, LA

$4,289,613

The Curators of the University of Missouri, Columbia, MO

$6,836,335

Mountain-Pacific Quality Health Foundation, Helena, MT

$5,020,754

New Jersey Institute of Technology, Newark, NJ

$23,048,351

Quality Insights of Pennsylvania, Inc. (Eastern), King of Prussia, PA

$28,810,271

Quality Insights of Pennsylvania, Inc. (Western), King of Prussia, PA

$15,625,910

Ponce School of Medicine, PR

$19,280,796

South Carolina Research Foundation, Columbia, SC

$5,581,407

Dakota State University, Madison, SD

$5,687,168

The TAMUS Health Science Center Research Foundation. College Station, TX

$5,279,970

University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX

$15,274,327

Dallas- Fort Worth Hospital Council Education and Research Foundation, Irving, TX

$8,488,513

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. Lubbock, TX

$6,666,296

Total

$267,616,743