Funds for AU Health hailed as a way to boost access to care
WASHINGTON (WRDW/WAGT) - The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services have approved the “GA-AIDE” proposal to invest more than $300 million into the Grady Health and Augusta University Health systems.
Georgia’s Democratic U.S. senators said the money will open up access to quality care for Georgia’s most vulnerable populations.
The new programs will focus on strengthening pediatric and maternal care, preventing and reducing the impact of chronic health conditions, improving access to screening and preventive health care, and addressing systemic health care inequities.
Georgia Sens. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff on Wednesday announced the approval.
“Senator Warnock and I have made addressing health disparities, particularly for minority communities, a top priority and have challenged Georgia’s health care system to meet these challenges head on with innovative ideas,” Ossoff said. “GA-AIDE takes an important step in rising to that challenge.”
Warnock said: “I’m glad to see the Administration heeded our call to expand health care access for vulnerable Georgians. The federal government’s investment in the Grady Health and Augusta University Health Systems will dramatically improve child and maternal health, make it easier to treat substance abuse, and bolster health care facilities that have worked to weather the pandemic.”
Dr. Brooks A. Keel, president of Augusta University and interim CEO of Augusta University Health Center, hailed the funds.
“Part of our mission as the state’s academic medical center is to provide care for the entire population of Georgia. I am grateful for the support of Senators Ossoff and Warnock and thank them for their outreach to CMS and their support in getting this done,” Keel said.
“This program will allow us, as a safety net hospital, to harness innovation that transforms care and improves health equity. This ultimately will better equip us to carry out our mission while improving the quality of care for all Georgians,” he said.
Last year, Ossoff and Warnock secured $306 million to help support more than 1,500 hospitals, clinics, and doctor’s offices across rural Georgia.
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