Jun 26 2001

SHELBY REQUESTS QUICK ACTION TO ENSURE ACCESS TO HEALTH CARE IN WEST ALABAMA

Shelby's Letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services Calls Attention to Health Care Access in Alabama

U.S. Senator Richard C. Shelby (R-AL) today expressed concern about the possible effects of a recent decision by the United States Bureau of Primary Health that terminated Family HealthCare's federal grant. The termination of the grant will result in the elimination of Family HealthCare's services.

In a letter to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, Tommy Thompson, Senator Shelby expressed his concern that Governor Thompson move quickly to ensure access to health care for those Alabamians who will no longer be covered by Family HealthCare.

"The termination of this grant has resulted in a serious lack of quality and timely health care in Alabama," said Senator Shelby. "I have called on Secretary Thompson to address this problem immediately, and to develop a long-term solution to the health care problems currently faced in Alabama."

A copy of Senator Shelby's letter to Secretary Thompson is posted below:

The Honorable Tommy Thompson
Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Ave SW Washington, DC 20201

Dear Mr. Secretary,

I am writing to bring to your attention a situation that is of great concern to me and many people in my home state of Alabama. In the past, a large number of indigent Alabamians have received healthcare service through West Alabama Health Services, which later merged with Family HealthCare.

However, due to financial mismanagement, the United States Bureau of Primary Health has recently terminated Family HealthCare's federal grant. Termination of this grant effectively eliminates Family HealthCare's existence.

I am concerned that the elimination of Family HealthCare will leave many indigent people without access to quality and timely healthcare. I ask that the Department of Human Services move forward expeditiously in formulating a solution that will ensure that all Alabamians, including those in West Alabama, have access to quality and timely healthcare.

I appreciate your assistance in this matter. If you would like to discuss this situation further, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely,
Richard Shelby