ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — The Biden Administration along with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the Health Resources and Services announced on Tuesday that they have provided Maryland more than $200,000 to support Covid response in rural areas.

Maryland has received $258,376 to help assist with Covid-19 testing and mitigation.

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“The Biden Administration recognizes the important role that small rural hospitals have in closing the equity gap and ensuring that rural Americans can protect themselves and their communities from COVID-19,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “Today’s funding will help small rural hospitals continue to serve their communities in this critical role by expanding their Covid-19 testing capacity and mitigation efforts.”

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State Offices of Rural Health will receive the funding to distribute to eligible small rural hospitals. Rural hospitals are those with less than 50 beds.

Hospitals will use the funds to maintain or increase Covid-19 testing, expand access to testing for rural residents, and tailor mitigation efforts to reflect the needs of local communities.

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“Our state-based SHIP grantees are important partners in helping to support small rural hospitals,” said HRSA Acting Administrator Diana Espinosa. “HRSA is committed to mitigating the spread of the virus in rural areas by supporting and empowering local providers to tailor their responses to COVID-19 to what works for their communities.”

CBS Baltimore Staff