The Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania (HAP) expressed disappointment on Tuesday over Gov. Tom Wolf's budget and the elimination of funding for rural critical-access hospitals, hospital supplemental payments for burn centers and obstetrical/neonatal units.
HAP said the $36.5 million in cuts represented approximately $17.5 million in state funds and $19 million in federal aid.
“There are six accredited burn centers that rely on these additional payments in order to handle complex, high-cost cases, many from other parts of the commonwealth and other states,” HAP said. “Each year, more than 138,000 babies are born in Pennsylvania. Medical assistance funds nearly half of all births.”
HAP said the 14 critical-access hospitals providing medical care to rural communities are “historically underpaid” for services because most patients are covered by Medicaid or Medicare.
HAP said hospitals around the state are changing the way care is delivered to patients by offering more outpatient services and engaging patients in care management and wellness. All of those changes require state funding "to “ensure fiscal stability.”
“Governor Wolf's budget proposal includes a comprehensive tax package that will be the focus of much debate during the coming weeks,” HAP said. “As the governor and General Assembly work to address these revenue issues, the hospital community stands ready to demonstrate the significant impact a strong investment in health care has on Pennsylvania's families and communities.”
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