US Senator eyes $12.4 bln for health care stimulus

WASHINGTON, Jan 26 (Reuters) - The chairman of a U.S. Senate Appropriations subcommittee outlined $12.4 billion in health care spending on Monday for inclusion in the economic stimulus package being written by Congress.

The panel leader, Democrat Tom Harkin of Iowa, said he would pursue the funding when the Appropriations subcommittee on health drafts its part of the legislation.

The meeting is scheduled for Tuesday and the outlook is good for approval, he said.

During a speech to the National Rural Health Association, Harkin called for $5.8 billion for wellness and preventive care, $5 billion to build and renovate community health care facilities, $1 billion for health care technology and $600 million to aid education and training of health care workers.

Harkin said health care reform should place more emphasis on preventive. (Reporting by Charles Abbott; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)