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Three Organizations in Tennessee Receive Nearly $1.4 million in Grant Funds from USDA Rural Development

Charron Culp
Release Date

Grants Are an Investment in Quality Health Care and Critical Community Infrastructure

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA., July 25, 2023 – U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Deputy Secretary Xochitl Torres Small today announced that USDA is expanding access to health care for more than 5 million people living in 39 states and Puerto Rico as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda. In Tennessee, three organizations are receiving funding.

“During one of the most critical times in our nation’s history, the Biden-Harris Administration responded to deliver immediate economic relief and ensure rural people have access to quality health care,” Deputy Secretary Torres Small said. “USDA’s Emergency Rural Health Care Grants are helping strengthen rural America’s health care infrastructure to build for the future.”

In Tennessee

  • Maury Regional Hospital will use a $700,861 grant to renovate Collinwood Primary Care Clinic, purchase medical supplies and equipment, as well as assist in payment of salaries. The clinic is in urgent need of repairs, which grew worse during the COVID-19 pandemic. Renovations will allow the clinic to better serve the rural citizens of Wayne County, Tennessee and allow for better preparations for future pandemics.
  • South Central Human Resource Agency will use a $481,418 grant to purchase a box truck for the Commodities program which will be used for emergency food deliveries, and to assist the Meals-on-Wheels program in purchasing nine delivery vans, as well as replace kitchen and cooking equipment that are beyond their useful life. Food deliveries in the service area have continued to increase since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, causing major wear and tear on the already aged vehicles. The vehicles and equipment will allow for more reliable deliveries without the added cost of extensive maintenance and repairs and will be better suited to provide services to Fayetteville and Hohenwald, Tennessee residents.
  • Southeast Tennessee Human Resource Agency will use a $208,137 grant to purchase vehicles, equipment, and salary assistance for the Southeast Tennessee Human Resource Agency (SETHRA), Commodities Program. This funding will assist in purchasing updated food storage equipment and refrigeration systems as well as delivery vehicles and salary assistance that will better enable SETHRA to continue its vital work of food delivery to the rural residents of Athens, Coalmont, Decatur, Ducktown, Dunlap, and Pikeville, Tennessee.

Nationwide, USDA is awarding $129 million in Emergency Rural Health Care Grants to improve health care facilities in rural towns across the nation. These grants will help 172 rural health care organizations expand critical services.

Today’s investments will help regional partnerships, public bodies, nonprofits and Tribes solve regional rural health care challenges. These solutions will build a stronger, more sustainable rural health care system for the nation’s small towns and communities.

Torres Small announced the awards today at the University of Virginia. USDA is providing a grant to the university’s Virginia Consortium to Advance Healthcare in Appalachia, a not-for-profit group that will use the funds to expand access to health care and telemedicine in Wise County. The funding will also help the group expand regional networks for resource sharing, training, education and communications. This group will also develop a blueprint for addressing pandemic emergency chronic illnesses and enhancing the long-term sustainability of rural health care.

The investments USDA is announcing will also expand health care services in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming and Puerto Rico. 

This funding is made possible by President Biden’s historic legislative package, the American Rescue Plan Act. The Act and this program are examples of the government’s ability to respond quickly to ensure every person and family has access to high-quality health care.

Background: Emergency Rural Health Care Grants

Congress passed the American Rescue Plan Act in March 2021 to deliver immediate economic relief to people impacted by the pandemic. Within months after the Act’s passage, USDA responded quickly by making this funding available to ensure the long-term availability of rural health care services.

In August 2021, USDA made the Emergency Rural Health Care Grants available through the American Rescue Plan Act to help rural health care facilities, tribes and communities expand access to health care services and nutrition assistance.

The assistance is helping provide immediate relief to support rural hospitals, health care clinics and local communities. USDA is administering the funds through Rural Development’s Community Facilities Program

Under the Biden-Harris Administration, Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, tribal and high-poverty areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov. If you’d like to subscribe to USDA Rural Development updates, visit the GovDelivery subscriber page.

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. Under the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.


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