Tester Secures $67.5 Million for Montana Rural Health Providers from American Rescue Plan

Funding for 308 Montana providers to mitigate pandemic related costs

U.S. Senator Jon Tester today announced $67,593,771.06 in Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) funding for Montana rural health care providers and suppliers through the American Rescue Plan to help mitigate the high cost of health care through the COVID-19 pandemic.

308 Montana providers and suppliers will receive payments through this funding.

“Rural health care providers are essential to keeping Montana’s small towns and communities strong,” said Tester. “These providers were already operating on tight budgets before the pandemic, and the last eighteen months have only made their jobs harder. This funding will help providers cover costs and keep providing top of the line care for Montanans in every corner of the Treasure State.”

HHS funding will be distributed through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), and will be issued to providers and suppliers who serve rural Medicaid, Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and Medicare beneficiaries. Payments will be received by 308 Montana providers and suppliers with an average payment of $220,175.15.

This funding will help health care providers keep their doors open, address workforce challenges, and make up for the lost revenues and increased expenses caused by the pandemic. Providers can use these funds for salaries, recruitment, or retention; supplies such as N95 or surgical masks; equipment like ventilators or improved filtration systems; capital investments; information technology; and other expenses related to prevent, prepare for, or respond to COVID-19.

The only member of the Montana delegation to support the American Rescue Plan, Tester has fought to support Montana’s health care providers throughout the pandemic. He secured $2.5 million in funding for the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services to help vaccinate eligible children through last December’s government funding and COVID stimulus bill, and more than $1 million in CARES Act funding to support health care workings in the Billings and Missoula areas. Additionally he secured funding for Montana telehealth programs in the CARES Act, and successfully fought for those provisions expanding access to telehealth to be made permanent.