The need for community health centers to provide basic care to the poor vastly exceeds the money available for such centers, the National Association of Community Health Centers and George Washington University said in a new report.
President Bush, who advocates establishing a community health center in every poor county in the U.S., continued a significant expansion of federal support in his 2006 budget -- requesting a $304 million funding increase, including $26 million to create 40 new centers, for a total federal commitment of $2 billion, the report said.
But a total of 929 poor counties lack a community health center, including 70% of counties in Oklahoma and more than 50% of counties in Kentucky, Louisiana, Montana and Texas, according to the report. About 42% of the 20 million people who live in the counties are low-income and 3 million are uninsured. Read the report.