HASC Urges Policy Makers to Support Hospitals, Not Cripple Them
This week, HASC urges policy makers to consider the ongoing and substantial financial burden hospitals continue to bear following their unprecedented response to the COVID-19 pandemic across the region.
Tomorrow, Thursday, May 27, the association will publish a print ad in the Los Angeles Times and the Culver City Observer that argues against the imposition of costly new mandates — just as hospitals and health systems start what will be a lengthy process to recover from pandemic-related financial hardship.
At a time when the state is proposing $6 billion for mandatory bonus pay and a proposed ordinance is before the City Council of Culver City requiring the city’s only hospital to provide retroactive hazard pay for frontline staff, we must remind policy makers that hospitals have just begun their steep climb from a financial pit that demands legislators’ support, not a further piling on of burdens.
“According to a 2021 report by the nationally-respected consulting firm Kaufman Hall, California hospitals lost more than $14 billion in 2020 due to the pandemic,” the advertorial reads. “The financial damage will continue at least through the rest of this year, with California hospitals expected to lose an additional $600 million to $2 billion, depending on vaccination rates and the path of the virus.”
Never in our lifetimes has the work of hospitals been more important or critical to our communities. Instead of penalizing hospitals and health systems, the sheer size of hospitals’ financial hole suggests that lawmakers must support hospitals rather than pursuing ordinances and mandates that drain razor-thin health care resources at a time when hospitals are toiling to ensure they can always put the needs of ALL Californians first.
As long as these massive deficits remain on your balance sheets, HASC will continue to pursue remedies and oppose measures that would add even more to the existing burden.
As always, take care, stay informed and stay tuned.