WALTHAM, M.A. – On Tuesday, Assistant Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Katherine Clark (MA-5) toured the Charles River Community Health Center in Waltham to highlight the benefits of the American Rescue Plan (ARPA). Massachusetts has already received over $146 million to support the 37 health centers across the state through ARPA. Funding from the American Rescue Plan allowed the Charles River Community Health Center to hire additional staff, expand COVID-19 mitigation and care services, and upgrade medical equipment. 

“For the millions of Americans who rely on Community Health Centers like this one in Waltham, the affordable, community-based services are life-saving,” said Assistant Speaker Clark. “That’s why President Biden and Congressional Democrats put health care investments at the top of our agenda in Washington. And now, the American Rescue Plan funding is enabling COVID-19 testing and treatment while allowing health centers to hire more staff, upgrade equipment, and expand access to care. As a result, patients are greeted with lower health care costs and better health outcomes. This is great progress, and I remain committed to making affordable care a reality for everyone in the Fifth District.” 

ARPA invested $7.6 billion in Community Health Centers (CHCs). CHCs can use these funds to carry out COVID-19 vaccine-related activities; conduct COVID-19 testing, contact tracing, surveillance, mitigation, and treatment; purchase COVID-19 equipment and supplies; support health care workforce; expand health care services and infrastructure; and conduct COVID-19 community outreach and education activities. 

Additionally, ARPA expanded access to health insurance coverage, lowered health costs, and ensured that health care truly is a right for all Americans. During the 2021 open enrollment period, a historic 14.5 million Americans signed up for health insurance. 

Charles River Community Health’s mission is to improve the health and well-being of the communities it serves. Over 80% of the clients at the center are from communities of color. 8.6% of the Waltham population has received healthcare through Charles River Community Health and 97.2% of patients live at or below 200% of the federal poverty level. 

Photos of yesterday’s tour can be found HERE.