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Florida health centers get more than $13M to help 70k new patients under Affordable Care Act

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MIAMI — Florida health centers are getting more than $13 million from the federal government to improve access to primary care.

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell said Friday that 48 health centers across the state would receive the grant money. The funds will allow health centers to hire an estimated 215 additional staff, expand clinic hours and add new services including oral health, mental and behavioral health, pharmacy, and vision.

The money is expected to help health centers reach an estimated 69,144 new patients in Florida.

As more Americans get insurance under the Affordable Care Act, health centers are a popular location for services, especially primary care.

Florida has a severe shortage of doctors. The state estimates it would take at least 753 primary care physicians to eliminate the shortages.

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