As Congress Stalls, More Community Health Centers Face Closure or Cuts
Fish River Rural Health is a community health center that’s about as frontier as it gets: It serves the population in northernmost Maine, along the border of Canada. According to Heather Pelletier, its executive director, "the people here are really friendly, but it’s really rural and really remote."
That's not uncommon among the 1,400 organizations funded by the Community Health Center Fund, which was created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and has faced an uncertain future since Congress let it expire more than four months ago. These clinics serve 27 million mostly low-income people -- half of whom live in rural areas where options for medical care are limited.
Fish River also benefits from the National Health Service Corp, which pays doctors' medical school debt if they work in medically underserved areas. That, too, was allowed to expire in the fall.
Read more at Governing.