News Releases

Murray Applauds $1.3 Million for Community Health Association of Spokane in Economic Recovery Package

Mar 02 2009

Murray, who helped pass the Economic Recovery legislation, has championed the Community Health Association of Spokane's (CHAS) efforts to expand and provide care to all

(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) applauded the announcement that $1,300,000 has been included in the Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Act for the Community Health Association of Spokane (CHAS). The funding was announced today as part of a grant program in the bill that helps community health centers address the spike in uninsured patients and create jobs. Senator Murray has continually fought for the needs of CHAS in Congress including securing nearly $1 million to help them expand operations in the Northeast Community Center and helping to pass legislation that authorizes increased funding for community health centers nationwide by $1.3 billion. Senator Murray visited the CHAS clinic in the Northeast Community Center last October.

“We’re moving quickly to get Economic Recovery funding working in Washington state communities,” said Senator Murray. “With more Spokane-area families losing their health insurance each day, this funding comes at a critical time. This funding will allow CHAS to protect jobs, keep overall health care costs down, and keep their doors open to everyone in the community - regardless of their ability to pay.  This is a great example of how the Economic Recovery Act promotes economic stability while protecting those being hurt by this recession.”

The grant announced today for CHAS is part of the Recovery Act’s Health Center Cluster Program which provides funding for new community health center sites and services, as well as supplemental payments to existing health centers to address spikes in uninsured patients. Today’s grant was among 126 grants announced nationwide that are administered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA).

Community Health Association of Spokane is a non-profit system of federally qualified community clinics providing quality medical and dental healthcare to families and individuals of all ages, regardless of ability to pay. They have five clinics: three in Spokane, one in Spokane Valley, and one in Deer Park.

Senator Murray’s Work for the Community Health Association of Spokane

Senator Murray has been a strong supporter of Community Health centers, which provide family-oriented primary and preventive health care services for people living in underserved communities.  Senator Murray was a cosponsor and worked very hard for the passage of the Health Care Safety Net Act of 2007 (S. 901/ H.R. 1343), which was signed into law and  authorized $1.3 billion in additional funding for community health centers over five years. 

As Chairman of the Senate Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations, Senator Murray secured $490,000 in the Fiscal Year 2008 for an expansion of the Northeast Community Center Construction Project in Spokane. This funding allowed for the expansion of the Community Health Association of Spokane clinic inside of the Northeast Community Center. Senator Murray also has included $475,000 for the expansion project in the Fiscal Year 2009 Appropriations bill which will be voted on by the Senate this week.