The following update was provided by Hall Render, NOSORH Policy Liaison:
Thanks to the efforts of many, President Trump signed into law the State Offices of Rural Health Reauthorization Act of 2018 in the final hours of the 115th Congress. The bill signing was a culmination of two years of hard work by State Offices of Rural Health, their partners and Hall Render in educating members of Congress and Congressional Committees on the importance of SORHs to our nation’s rural health care. Special acknowledgement to Senator Roberts (KS) for introducing the bill, Representative Mullin (OK) and Representative Schrader (OR) and their staff for supporting SORH.
The bill (S. 2278), which is now public law, reauthorizes the SORH grant program for the first time since its creation in the early 1990s. It also authorizes $12.5 million in federal funding for the SORH grant program between fiscal years 2018 and 2022.
The bill passed the House on December 19 by a roll call vote of 357-4 and was sent to the President on December 27. The New Year’s Eve bill signing was one of the final Presidential actions of 2018.