Governor Sununu’s announcement of critical emergency funding for New Hampshire hospitals is a welcomed and essential first step in ensuring that hospitals and health systems on the front lines have the resources they need to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Along with our partners, hospitals and health systems have taken critical steps to respond to this crisis and ensure safe care for patients, health care professionals and communities. Hospitals recently announced the suspension of all elective and non-urgent procedures, with some curtailing community practice hours, to preserve personal protective equipment and ensure a safe environment for staff, patients and the community. These actions have resulted in significant revenue losses for hospitals across the state, as has standing up response efforts at hospitals to address a potential surge of COVID-19 patients. All in, these efforts are resulting in close to $200 million a month in lost revenue for hospitals, which simply isn’t sustainable. This critical funding for hospitals will help ensure the stability of New Hampshire’s healthcare system as it continues to respond to the COVID-19 crisis, but it’s just a first step, and we must continue to work with our state and congressional delegation for critical federal resources.
The active collaboration among and between hospitals and other health care providers with our local, state and federal partners is key to ensuring the health and safety of our patients, health care workers and our communities. We appreciate Governor Sununu’s actions, as well as the support of our congressional delegation, and look forward to working with all of our partners in coordinating New Hampshire’s response to this public health emergency.
Steve Ahnen is the president of the New Hampshire Hospital Association