Burns Introduces Bill to Create Rural Hospital Replacement Grant Program

Monday, 12 February 2024 19:14

Burns Introduces Bill to Create Rural Hospital Replacement Grant Program Featured

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OKLAHOMA CITY – Sen. George Burns, R-Pollard, introduced a measure aimed at addressing healthcare needs in rural communities. Senate Bill 1269 creates the Rural Hospital Replacement Grant Program under the State Department of Health, providing vital funding to support the construction of new hospitals to replace qualifying rural hospitals.

“Access to quality healthcare is essential for all Oklahomans, especially those in rural areas,” Burns said. “This bill underscores our commitment to ensuring that residents in underserved communities have access to the medical services they need.”

The proposed Rural Hospital Replacement Grant Program defines a qualifying rural hospital as a licensed facility located in a county with a population of 50,000 or less and a poverty rate of not less than 19 percent. The Department of Health will establish an application process and scoring criteria to determine eligibility for grant funding.

Furthermore, the measure establishes the Rural Hospital Replacement Revolving Fund, which will consist of monies appropriated by the Legislature to support the program's initiatives.

SB 1269 is available to be considered.

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