HHS Gives Morehouse School Of Medicine $40M To Fight COVID-19
In other administration news: President Donald Trump taps appointees to the Census Bureau; CMS creates a new Health Informatics office; and a VA telemedicine office spent nearly $39 million during the pandemic.
Morehouse School Of Medicine Gets $40 Million Grant To Fight COVID-19
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced Tuesday it is providing a $40 million grant to Atlanta’s Morehouse School of Medicine to fight COVID-19 in racially-diverse, rural and socially vulnerable communities. The medical school will work with the HHS Office of Minority Health on a three-year project with community-based organizations across the nation to deliver education and information on resources to help fight the pandemic, such as testing and vaccinations once one is developed and federally-approved. The partnership starts next month. (Stirgus, 6/24)
Trump Appointees Join Census Bureau; Democrats Concerned Over Partisan 'Games'
The Trump administration is adding two new political appointees to the U.S. Census Bureau, raising concerns among some Democrats about partisan interference with the ongoing national head count. Nathaniel Cogley, a political science professor at Tarleton State University based near Fort Worth, Texas, is joining the federal government's largest statistical agency in a newly created position of deputy director for policy, while Adam Korzeniewski — a former political consultant to a YouTube personality known for racist pranks — is serving as a senior advisor to Cogley, according to a statement by Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham in a press release issued Tuesday. (Lo Wang, 6/23)
New CMS Office Takes Aim At Clinician's Administrative Burden
CMS on Tuesday created the Office of Burden Reduction and Health Informatics as the agency aims to reduce providers' administrative workloads. The new office will bolster the dialogue between regulators and healthcare workers as staff looks to weed out or modify outdated regulations, CMS said. It will also focus on interoperability and providing patients and clinicians with an individual's complete medical history, the agency said. (Kacik, 6/23)
VA Connected Care Office Has Spent $39 Million In CARES Act Funding
A telemedicine office at the Veterans Affairs Department has spent nearly $39 million in congressional funding amid the COVID-19 pandemic, VA leaders told lawmakers Tuesday. Congress had allocated $17.2 billion to the Veterans Health Administration under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act to support operations during the pandemic, as well as an additional $2.15 billion specifically for the VA's Office of Information and Technology. Since March, the VA's Office of Connected Care has spent $39 million of that funding. (Cohen, 6/23)