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WASHINGTON (AP) - Officials say nearly 400 community health centers will share more than $700 million in capital improvement grants as a result of President Barack Obama's health care law.

Community health centers serve mainly low-income people at more than 8,500 locations around the country. Patients can see a nurse or doctor regardless of their ability to pay. Many are uninsured.

The grants for construction and renovation projects announced Tuesday are part of an $11 billion funding boost for the centers under the health care law. They were awarded through a competition that involved independent reviewers scoring each application. That from Mary Wakefield, director of the federal Health Resources and Services Administration.

If the health law is overturned by the Supreme Court, it's unclear the government would be able to recover the money.

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STATEMENT FROM LT. GOVERNOR BROWN ON $14.9 MILLION IN CAPITAL GRANTS AWARDED TO MARYLAND COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTERS THROUGH THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (May 1, 2012) - Today, the federal Department of Health and Human Services announced that $14.9 million in capital grants, made available by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), have been awarded to Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) in Maryland to help community health centers pursue job-creating renovation and construction projects that will expand their ability to care for additional patients. In response to the announcement, Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown released the following statement:

"Maryland's Federally Qualified Health Centers are providing critical care to the most vulnerable in our communities: the uninsured and the underinsured. Community health centers are the main providers of primary care for so many families, and thanks to the Affordable Care Act, these health centers will be able to enhance their facilities and expand operations to provide high quality care to more Marylanders. I thank President Obama, Secretary Sebelius and Maryland's Congressional Delegation for their continued leadership in improving the health of our communities."

Four FQHC's in Maryland received grants today, including $5 million for Chase Brexton Health Services, $4.4 million for Baltimore Medical System Inc., and $5 million for People's Community Health Center, all in Baltimore City, as well as $500,000 for Three Lower Counties Community Services, Inc., in Salisbury. For more information on today's grant announcement, visit http://www.hhs.gov/news/press/2012pres/05/20120501a.html.

As Co-Chair of the Maryland Health Care Reform Coordinating Council, Lt. Governor Brown leads the O'Malley-Brown Administration's health care reform efforts. Under the leadership of Governor O'Malley and Lt. Governor Brown, Maryland has implemented reforms that have expanded health coverage to over 315,000 Marylanders and put the State in position to maximize the Affordable Care Act. Earlier this year, the Lt. Governor launched HealthReform.Maryland.gov, a new website designed to provide information about what health care reform means to Maryland residents and small businesses.

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