House subcommittee suggests funding boosts for nursing education, cuts to rural outreach

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The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Thursday proposed $374.3 billion in funding for federal Health and Human Services programs in fiscal year 2005, up 2% over 2004.

Under the plan, funding would rise 19% for nurse loan repayment and scholarships, to $31.74 million; 16% for nursing education and retention, to $36.8 million; 8% for state survey and certification, to $270.3 million; and 5% for hospital bioterrorism preparedness, to $543 million.

However the subcommittee suggests cutting funding to the Community Access Program altogether, and decreasing funding 24% for rural health outreach, 18% for rural hospital FLEX grants and 8.5% for advanced nurse education.

The full committee is expected to review the recommendations next week. To see the proposals, visit