Get to Know the MOBILE Health Care Act

President Biden signed the MOBILE Health Care Act into law last week. Read on to learn more about how this bill will support access to care at community health centers.
The 30 community health center organizations in Tennessee have approximately 200 sites across Tennessee. Beyond permanent sites, several health centers have mobile units. Mobile units allow health centers to expand access to care for underserved and vulnerable populations by addressing barriers that could otherwise prevent folks from obtaining services.  
How do health centers rely on mobile units? 
Community health centers in Tennessee are located underserved urban and rural areas with sites in 68 of the state's 95 counties. Although Tennessee's health centers cover many different areas within the state through permanent health center sites, mobile units allow health centers to expand access to health care. Mobile units address barriers such as transportation and travel time that could otherwise prevent individuals from seeking care and allow health centers to reach rural areas. Community health centers in Tennessee use their mobile events to conduct outreach in their communities and provide routine health screenings and services such as vaccines.  
What is the MOBILE Health Care Act? 
President Biden signed the Maximizing Outcomes through Better Investments in Lifesaving Equipment for (MOBILE) Health Care Act last week. The MOBILE Health Care Act, led by Representatives Susie Lee (D-NV) and Richard Hudson (R-NC) and Senators Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and Susan Collins (R-ME), would allow the health centers to use New Access Point (NAP) funding from the Bureau of Primary Health Care (BPHC), to cover the cost of mobile units.  
Previously, health centers were only able to use NAP funding for mobile units alongside the establishment of a permanent site. Under the MOBILE Health Care Act, health centers can use NAP funding to support a mobile unit regardless of whether it is connected to the creation of a permanent site. However, only existing health centers can use the funding for a new mobile unit.  
The National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) strongly supported the legislation and released a statement  upon the bill's passage by the House. Every member of Tennessee's Congressional Delegation voted in favor of the bill. 
The legislation will go into effect on January 1, 2024. 



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