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HHS Must Move Quickly on Additional Funding That Targets the Safety Net

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Statement attributable to:
Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH
President and CEO
America’s Essential Hospitals

WASHINGTON — While it is fortunate hospitals today will begin seeing their portion of $30 billion released from the Public Health and Social Services Fund, the allocation formula for this tranche will leave many essential hospitals behind just when they need aid the most.

Our hospitals are struggling now to manage surging patient volume, staff and supply shortages, and other severe challenges as their limited cash reserves dwindle. By their mission, these hospitals care for large numbers of uninsured and Medicaid patients in communities where COVID-19 has exposed persistent disparities in health and health care. So, a distribution formula based on Medicare fee-for-service revenue misses the mark for many of our members and their patients.

The Department of Health and Human Services has stated its intention to target remaining fund dollars at providers that predominately serve the Medicaid population and at other groups. We urge the agency to stand by this commitment and to make it happen quickly and without conditions that slow the process. With no cushion left to absorb the heavy financial pressure COVID-19 creates, essential hospitals disadvantaged by today’s allocation need more help now. Time is not on our side.

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About America’s Essential Hospitals
America’s Essential Hospitals is the leading champion for hospitals and health systems dedicated to high-quality care for all, including the most vulnerable. We support our more than 300 members with advocacy, policy development, research, and education. Communities depend on essential hospitals to provide specialized, lifesaving services; train the health care workforce; advance public health and health equity; and coordinate care. Essential hospitals innovate and adapt to lead the way to more effective and efficient care. Learn more at essentialhospitals.org.

Contact:
Carl Graziano
cgraziano@essentialhospitals.org
202.585.0102

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