Gov announces grant to med school
EDINBURG — Gov. Greg Abbott said Thursday that he will put forth proposals to expand access to health care and improve quality while managing its cost in an effort to increase the number of doctors across the state.
“To build healthier families in the Rio Grande Valley, we need to expand access to improved health care, especially for those who are most at risk,” Abbott said, speaking at the same building in the Rio Grande Valley where he debated Wendy Davis months earlier. “I hope to see legislation like that on my desk that I can sign real soon.”
Abbott made his first trip as governor to the Valley for the announcement of a $2.8 million grant to the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley School of Medicine to support health care in colonias.
Abbott noted recent achievements made along the border, including the creation of a regional university and formation of a medical school, and the future rocket launch site of SpaceX in Brownsville.
“We have to face a reality,” Abbott said. “Our number one rankings don’t touch the lives of everybody. There are people who live on the fringes of opportunity … people who suffer from serious health issues.”But while Texas boasts about its ranking in job creation and energy, Abbott said the grant, which will help some of the area’s poorest communities, is a reminder that the state’s successes are not enjoyed by everyone.
The grant from the United Health Foundation is part of its Helping Build Healthier Communities program and will be parsed out over three years to support the university’s colonia program.
The grant will help establish the Center for Colonia Integrated Care for two colonias to provide screenings, health education and promotion and dental and mental health. The program will also increase the number of trained promotoras, known as basic health care providers.
“I think back to my own reliance on doctors,” Abbott said. “It is because of those health care providers being able to literally piece back together my life.”
Source: San Antonio Express-News