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Nearly $18 Million to Improve Rural Health Care in Maine Secured by Senator Collins in Funding Bill in First Key Step

Washington, D.C.--U.S. Senator Susan Collins, a senior member of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee, announced that she secured $17,493,000 to improve rural health care in the draft Fiscal Year 2023 Health and Human Services appropriations bill.  The bill, which was officially released by the full Senate Appropriations Committee today, must still be voted upon by the full Senate and House.


“Mainers in every part of our state should be able to receive the vital medical services they need, which is why I have long advocated for funding to support access to quality rural health care,” said Senator Collins.  “By helping to increase the number of health care providers and upgrading medical equipment and ambulances, the funding for these projects would substantially improve the delivery of health care and enhance the wellbeing of Mainers living in rural parts of our state.  As a senior member of the Appropriations Committee, I will continue to champion this funding as the appropriations process moves forward.”


Details on the 14 rural health care projects Senator Collins requested are below:


Androscoggin County


Dempsey Center Mobile Units

Recipient: Dempsey Centers for Quality Cancer Care

Project Location: Lewiston, ME

Amount: $725,000

Purpose: To support the purchase of two mobile units to provide physical and emotional support to rural Mainers impacted by cancer, including those with limited transportation and low digital access.


Aroostook County


Ambulance Acquisition for Central Aroostook Ambulance Service

Recipient: Central Aroostook County Emergency Medical Service

Project Location: Blaine, Bridgewater, Mars Hill, ME

Amount: $454,000

Purpose: To support the purchase of a new, fully equipped ambulance to service the communities of Blaine, Bridgewater, and Mars Hill, which are located more than 20 miles from an emergency department.


Aroostook County Mobile Rural Dental Unit

Recipient: St. Apollonia Dental Clinic

Project Location: Presque Isle, ME

Amount: $450,000

Purpose: To support a mobile dental unit to improve access to complete dental services for children throughout Aroostook County.


Dental Workforce Training and Care Expansion to Northern Maine

Recipient: University of Maine System

Project Location: Presque Isle, ME

Amount: $750,000

Purpose: support the facility construction and equipment needs of a new dental lab at the University of Maine at Presque Isle, with the goal of training an additional 20 dental assistants annually.  


Cumberland County


Central Maine Healthcare Hospital Equipment Purchase

Recipient: Central Maine Healthcare Corporation

Project Location: Bridgton, Rumford, ME

Amount: $820,000

Purpose: To support the purchase of medical equipment and related renovations for the Rumford and Bridgton hospitals.


Kennebec County


University of Maine System Nursing Education Simulation

Recipient: University of Maine System

Project Location: Augusta, ME

Amount: $4,500,000

Purpose: To support facility expansion and simulation equipment to increase nursing enrollment throughout the UMaine System.


Knox County


Knox Clinic Expansion

Recipient: Mid-Coast Health Net Inc.

Project Location: Thomaston, ME

Amount: $1,836,000

Purpose: To support the construction and equipment needs of a new community health center in Thomaston, allowing the Clinic to reach under-resourced areas of Knox County.


Oxford County


Stephens Memorial Hospital PACE Ambulance Station Renovation

Recipient: MaineHealth

Project Location: Norway, ME

Amount: $1,642,000

Purpose: To support facility improvements and equipment for the PACE Paramedic Station in Norway, which will serve 18 rural communities in Oxford County.


Penobscot County


Rural Nursing, First Responder, and Allied Health Workforce Training Initiative

Recipient: Eastern Maine Community College

Project Location: Bangor, ME

Amount: $1,350,000

Purpose: To expand health care training programs that provide hands-on and remote training to rural health care workers and prospective workers as part of licensing and certification programs.


Millinocket Regional Hospital Emergency Department Renovation/Expansion

Recipient: Millinocket Regional Hospital

Project Location: Millinocket, ME

Amount: $3,500,000

Purpose: To support the renovation and expansion of the Millinocket Regional Hospital Emergency Room to meet community needs.


Piscataquis County


Ambulance Acquisition for Three Rivers Ambulance Service

Recipient: Three Rivers Ambulance

Project Location: Milo, ME

Amount: $175,000

Purpose: To purchase a new ambulance for the Three Rivers Ambulance Service, which serves eight communities in rural Maine.


Somerset County


Upper Kennebec Valley Ambulance

Recipient: Upper Kennebec Valley Ambulance Service

Project Location: Bingham, ME

Amount: $600,000

Purpose: To support facilities improvements and the purchase of two ambulances and additional emergency equipment.


Jackman Paramedic Garage

Recipient: Town of Jackman

Project Location: Jackman, ME

Amount Requested: $541,000

Project Purpose: To build a cooperative municipal facility that will house a paramedicine vehicle and ambulances for regional emergency services responses.


Waldo County


Brooks Ambulance Personnel Training Center

Recipient: Brooks Ambulance, Inc.

Project Location: Brooks, ME

Amount: $150,000

Purpose: To purchase an EMS transfer van.

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