Hoeven Announces Nearly $1.5 Million in HHS Grants for Northland Healthcare Alliance, UND Nursing

Awards Further Health Care Innovation, Nursing Training

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven today announced that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded grants totaling nearly $1.5 million to foster innovation in health care and the diversification of the nursing workforce.

“A good quality of life depends on having access to quality health care,” Hoeven said. “The Innovation Award will enable Northland Healthcare Alliance to continue its good work of enabling elderly North Dakotans greater independence and an opportunity to live in their own homes. UND’s nursing award will help to address the shortage of nurses in North Dakota and promote more nursing graduates to meet the health care needs of our state as we grow our population.”

The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services has awarded a $1.142 million Health Care Innovation Award to Northland Healthcare Alliance (NHA) in Bismarck to advance its rural health care for seniors initiative. The award is granted for the most compelling new ideas to deliver better health, improved care and lower costs to people enrolled in Medicare, Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), particularly those with the highest health care needs.

NHA had previously won a similar award in 2012 for the Northland Care Coordination for Seniors program, which they developed to keep seniors in the community living healthier, safer and more independent lives in their homes. The goal of the model is to reduce avoidable admissions to nursing facilities and decrease hospitals stays leading to lower health care costs per person while improving the health and health care for the participants. The NHA received $2.7 million for the program with savings over three years estimated to be $2.9 million.

Additionally, the Health Resources and Services Administration has awarded $350,000 through its Workforce Diversity program to the University of North Dakota for nursing training. The program provides student stipends or scholarships, stipends for diploma or associate degree nurses to enter a bridge or degree completion program, student scholarships or stipends for accelerated nursing degree programs, pre-entry preparation, advanced education preparation, and retention activities.

The funding is targeted to projects that will substantially benefit rural or underserved populations, or help meet public health nursing needs in state or local health departments.

As a member of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Hoeven is working to support programs and secure funds through annual appropriations bills that address the needs of North Dakota’s growing population.