July 16, 2008

Oregon Health, Education Facilities Slated for Federal Funds

Funding for Vernonia Flood Cleanup Part of $3.1 Million for Oregon

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) today announced that $200,000 for repairs to the flood-ravaged Vernonia schools is included in an appropriations bill for Oregon health and education projects. The money is part of $3.1 million in Oregon projects in the recently approved Labor, Health and Human Services Appropriations bill. This is the first step for appropriations funding. Next the bill will come before the full Senate.

"From after-school programs in Portland, to innovative rural health programs, to flood clean-up in Vernonia, these funds will serve Oregonians across the state," said Wyden. "In many cases, these funds will go to projects that help underserved populations. Modern health facilities and top-shelf education provide the building blocks for a strong and prosperous future."

"Investment in innovative health programs and centers will ensure Oregon remains on the cutting edge of healthcare technology and providing world class care," said Smith. "These projects will also generate funding to support Oregon's growing education needs, empowering our students to learn and grow."

Of note, the bill includes $200,000 for the City of Vernonia School District for the repair and replacement of equipment lost to severe flooding during storms in December 2007.

In addition, the bill includes money for several health care facilities across the state:

Columbia River Community Hospital - $250,000 - The Columbia River Community Hospital in Columbia County will be a 12-bed, 24,000 sq. ft. hospital with a 24-hour emergency room and clinical services sufficient to treat common problems of emergency room patients.

Eastern Oregon Telemedicine Project - $100,000 - As part of the project, Blue Mountain Diagnostic Imaging, Inc., would create a tele-radiology system to serve eight rural Eastern Oregon communities in Umatilla, Grant, Morrow, Gilliam, and Wheeler counties.

Springfield Community Health Center in Lane County - $100,000 - To expand the physical capacity of its Springfield, Oregon clinical facility and to upgrade to electronic medical record technology.

Jewish Family & Child Service's NORC Aging in Place Initiative - $100,000 - This Multnomah and Washington County public-private partnership will demonstrate an innovative community-based health and supportive services delivery model for aging seniors.

Lincoln Community Health Center - $250,000 - Will provide medical supplies and technology upgrades to implement electronic medical records for the Lincoln County facility.

Mental Health Transition Housing in Marion County - $150,000 - To provide bridge funding for those temporarily without Medicaid & Oregon Health Plan services and for mental health treatment.

Multiple Sclerosis Network and Registry - $200,000 - A project of Providence Health Care Systems. Modeled after a successful stroke registry, the MS registry is an interactive network of health care professionals for Oregon patients and medical professionals to optimize healthcare for MS patients in urban and rural areas.

Mental Health Counseling Center for South Lane Mental Health - $150,000 - South Lane Mental Health, a private, non-profit agency providing mental health services to nearly 1,000 mostly low-income and uninsured people each year would expand and upgrade their aging facilities serving Lane and Douglas County.

One Sky Center - $200,000 - Located at Oregon Health Sciences University, the facility will be a national resource center for American Indian/Alaska Native substance abuse and mental health services.

Cascade AIDS Project - $200,000 - Funding will augment Cascade AIDS projects providing education, outreach and prevention services for individuals living with HIV/AIDS across the state.

The bill also includes funding to support education initiatives across Oregon:

Southern Oregon University/Rogue Community College Higher Education Center - $300,000 - The funding will provide the technical infrastructure for student record systems, smart classrooms for course distance delivery, and will create a business and community forum resource for testing and research in Medford.

Oregon Institute of Technology Health Informatics Simulation Lab - $100,000
- To support the newly launched Health Informatics undergraduate degree program and Medical Imaging and Clinical Lab programs.

Portland State University Science Research and Teaching Center - $150,000 - To support the center in developing innovative ways to improve science education at the university and K-12 levels.

SMART (Start Making A Reader Today) program - $100,000
- A Multnomah County program which engages community volunteers to read one-on-one every week with thousands of K-3 Oregon children.

Veterans Outreach and Job Training Pilot Project - $200,000 - To expand the Clackamas County job training and employment services program to include veterans suffering from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and/or traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Youth Development Initiative - $100,000 - To support the initiative, part of Self Enhancement, Inc, serving over 2300 inner-city Portland youth (ages 8-25) and their families annually in comprehensive year-round academic, enrichment and family involvement programs.

Blue Mountain Community College in Pendleton - $300,000 - Funding will be used for the development of curriculum for college classes in the greater Hermiston area.