On March 9, the White House released and sent to Congress the fiscal year (FY) 2024 Budget Summary of the U.S. Government. The budget request outlines President Biden’s program funding and policy initiatives for the upcoming year. Several proposals in the budget indicate support for aging service providers, and increased funding that supports the LeadingAge legislative priorities. Most notable is funding that is allocated for a new health care workforce shortage initiative, increasing the capacity of the nursing workforce and nursing education programs and an investment in expanding the caregiving infrastructure.
New Health Care Workforce Shortages Initiative. Also notable, within HRSA, is funding for expanding the health care workforce capacity across the country. The budget request includes $28 million to HRSA for a new program to address growing concerns related to healthcare workforce shortages and $25 million for a new program to support the adaptation of workplace wellness in healthcare facilities including hospitals, rural health clinics, community health centers, and medical professional associations.
Expanding and Modernizing the Nursing Workforce. The FY 2024 budget request includes $349.9 million for the Nursing Workforce, an increase of $49.5 million over the FY 2023 enacted. The budget includes an additional $32 million to expand, enhance, and modernize nursing education programs. Among other things, the investment will increase the number of nurse faculty and clinical preceptors. HRSA will emphasize expanding nursing student enrollment and recruiting and supporting the nurse faculty and preceptors necessary to develop new nurses. Additionally, the budget includes an increase of $17 million for Advanced Nursing Education to grow and diversify the maternal and perinatal health nursing workforce by increasing the number of Certified Nurse Midwives, with a focus on practitioners working in rural and underserved communities.
National Health Service Corps. To bolster the health care workforce, the budget request provides a total of $966 million in 2024 to expand the National Health Service Corps, which provides loan repayment and scholarships to health care professionals in exchange for practicing in underserved areas.
Registered Apprenticeships. The budget invests $335 million, a $50 million increase above the 2023 enacted level, to expand Registered Apprenticeship opportunities in these high-growth fields while increasing the number of workers from historically underrepresented groups, including people of color and women, who participate in Registered Apprenticeships.
Caregiving Infrastructure. The 2022 National Strategy to Support Family Caregivers provides a blueprint for building a system that provides the support caregivers need. The budget would provide a total of $53 million across several programs to begin implementation, with investments in expanding direct services to support family caregivers today and building capacity to better support them in the future. The request includes $250 million, an increase of $45 million, for Family Caregiver Support Services; $16 million, which is $4 million above FY 2023 enacted, for Native American Caregiver Support Services; and $14 million, an increase of $4 million, for the Lifespan Respite program. The Budget also specifically provides $2.4 billion for the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers, which includes stipend payments and support services to help empower family caregivers of eligible veterans.
The President’s FY 2024 Budget is the first move in a set of discussions and negotiations that will determine final appropriations for the federal government for FY 2024. You can access a summary here.
The Administration will release additional details of its budget request on March 13.