58 Rural Montana Health Providers to Receive $2.8 Million for Testing, Tester Announces

Senator: “Robust testing is going to be our first line of defense against a second wave of infections”

Continuing his push to expand access to coronavirus testing across Montana, U.S. Senator Jon Tester today announced $2,868,762 in Health Resources and Services Administration funding for Montana’s 58 Rural Health Clinics to expand testing capacity.

“As Montana’s economy reopens, robust testing is going to be our first line of defense against a second wave of infections,” said Tester. “That’s why the funds I’ve secured here are so critical, especially for our rural health clinics, which will use these resources to identify and contain new infections in frontier communities across our state, protecting both families and our economy.”

The funds Tester is announcing today are a part of $225 million for rural health clinics included in the interim coronavirus relief package unanimously passed by the Senate last month. Senator Mitch McConnell’s initial proposal included no money for health care providers and workers, but after bipartisan negotiations, $25 billion was included to expand testing resources across the country.

Tester has been working tirelessly to ensure that Montana hospitals and health care facilities are prepared to combat the COVID-19 crisis. He recently announced nearly $50 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to help Montana expand testing capacity. He also secured $3 million for 14 Montana community health centers to expand COVID-19 testing, and he delivered nearly $200 million in relief funding for 121 rural Montana hospitals, health centers, and clinics. Additionally, he sent a letter to Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar urging him to guarantee that a portion of the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund will be set aside specifically for rural providers, health care expenses, or lost revenues attributable to the pandemic.

Visit tester.senate.gov/coronavirusresources for a list of resources for Montanans during the COVID-19 outbreak