Hill-Burton Act

Topics: Health care, Public health, World War II Pages: 2 (520 words) Published: December 5, 2011
Hill-Burton Act of 1946

Hill-Burton Act of 1946
Holly M. Yager
Health Care Delivery Systems
November 9, 2011

Hill-Burton Act of 1946

The Hill-Burton Act of 1946 is actually called The Hill-Burton Construction Act and was signed as Public Law 79-725. The critical shortage of medical facilities at the close of World War II prompted the passage of the National Hospital Survey and Construction Act. It is called Hill-Burton after its congressional sponsors, Senator Lister Hill and Senator Harold Burton. It was designed to provide federal grants to modernize hospitals that had become obsolete due to lack of capital investment throughout the Great Depression and World War II (1929-1945). It became a major influence in the expansion of the hospital industry. This act increased the number and size of facilities substantially. The act stimulated the growth of the health care industry by providing federal aid to the states for hospital and health care updating and construction. The federal support of hospitals in construction was very important to the location in the underserved rural areas. In 1946, an amendment to the U.S. Public Health Act authorizing grants to states for surveying their hospital and public health care needs and for planning and constructing additional facilities. Subsequent amendments authorized federal funding for as much as two-thirds of the cost of construction projects and allowed legislation to include diagnostic and treatment centers, long-term treatment centers, and nursing homes. It also aided in the modernization of existing hospitals. Over 4,600 projects to expand existing hospitals or construct new ones were initiated within twenty years after the signing of the Hill-Burton Act. Since 1946, with the construction of new hospitals and the updating of existing facilities, the Public Health Service has provided national leadership in hospital planning, research, and operation. Hill-Burton Act

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