The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development will host a consultation next month for elected leaders of federally-recognized tribes to solicit input on implementing a new emergency health care grant program in tribal communities.
Congress appropriated $500 million in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to create grants to help rural health care facilities, tribes, and communities expand access to COVID-19 vaccines, health care services, and nutrition assistance. USDA will administer the funds through the Community Facilities Program. Tribes will be eligible to apply, along with other eligible applicants. The facilities financed must be located in and primarily serve rural areas.
USDA is requesting input from tribal leaders to identify potential challenges and opportunities for delivering the funds on tribal lands. The consultation will help USDA identify:
- How the funds can be used to improve access to quality health care for tribes;
- Financial and operational needs of tribal health care providers;
- Barriers for tribes in accessing funding; and
- Additional considerations, such as critical health care issues on tribal lands, that need to be taken into account to help define health care opportunities for tribes.
The consultation will be held virtually on Tuesday, May 4, 2021, at noon PST. Tribal leaders are invited to register online.
Questions related to this tribal consultation should be directed to the USDA Office of Tribal Relations, Tribal.Relations@usda.gov, (202) 205-2249.