As the nation reels from the deepest recession since the end of World War II, President Barack Obama signs a giant economic stimulus package that contains billions in planned healthcare spending. The $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 includes at least $150 billion for healthcare, with the lion's share going toward expanding COBRA by $25 billion and Medicaid assistance to the states by $87 billion, while bulking up health information technology to the tune of $36 billion. The new law also takes steps to boost hospital pay, fund comparative-effectiveness research, and support clinical preventive services and community-based prevention programs.
Stimulus package offers billions for IT, expanding COBRA
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