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Join our letter-writing campaign to the Governor below

Here's what you need to know

 

The Honorable Kathy Hochul
Governor of New York State
NYS State Capitol Building
Albany, New York 12224


Dear Governor Hochul:

I am writing to you to respectfully and urgently request that your administration reverse its decision to deny financial assistance to WMCHealth as requested in the SFY 2024 Vital Access Provider Assurance Program Application for HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley.

Since taking over operations for HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley, WMCHealth has played a vital role across the region, delivering on their lofty commitments to transform the quality of care for residents in our community.

The state’s denial of temporary ongoing financial assistance threatens to compromise this progress, which includes the opening of a brand new HealthAlliance Hospital last December – which has seen a 7% increase in patient volume, achieving provisional Level III Adult Trauma status at HealthAlliance Hospital, and opening the only advanced service cardiac catheterization lab in Ulster County which has already surpassed 1,000 procedures.

Ulster and Delaware county residents deserve to be a priority. Rural communities are too often overlooked and have to venture miles from home for healthcare services. WMCHealth plays an indispensable role in delivering trauma, maternal, and pediatric care to residents and their families and most importantly – keeps care at home. Failing to provide this funding and creating the potential for eliminating services would have a devastating impact.

Thank you for your time and attention to this matter, and I hope you will continue to prioritize healthcare services for our community.

 

Thank you,

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What you need to know

In 2016, the New York State Department of Health approached WMCHealth with a request to take over the management of HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley (HAHV) facilities. At the time, HAHV was saddled with operating inefficiencies and facing significant financial challenges.

WMCHealth agreed to assume responsibility and oversee operations and, in 2019, worked with state officials to develop a five-year Financial Stabilization Plan that included consistent state funding over that entire period. During this time period, WMCHealth would also provide financial support to HealthAlliance.

Now, New York State is walking away from its obligations to Ulster and Delaware counties by refusing to make its Fiscal Year 2024 payment to support the financial stabilization plan. 

The state’s decision to walk away from its previous financial commitment will affect our neighbors in Ulster and Delaware counties the most, as without increased state financial support they will unfortunately see a reduction or delay in much-needed services in order to close a budget shortfall.

We are actively continuing all efforts to communicate with the Department of Health and other members of state leadership to resolve this issue and remain on our path to financial stability.

To date, the state has not been able to provide a viable commitment to restore funding to HealthAlliance.

The simplest solution, which we have proactively proposed, is an extension of our original sustainability plan. This is necessary because of the significant impacts the COVID pandemic had on our original timeline and would allow us to continue the path of success we are currently on, which has included:

  • The opening of the new HealthAlliance Hospital last December, which has seen a 7% increase in patient volume;
  • Achieving provisional Level III Adult Trauma designation at HealthAlliance hospital; and
  • Opening the only advanced service cardiac catheterization lab in Ulster County, which has already surpassed 1,000 procedures and saved dozens of lives.

Meanwhile, WMCHealth is not asking for additional state support without increasing its own financial commitment. The Network has doubled its payments to the sustainability plan at HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley, contributing greater than $70 million over the last two years alone to sustain the plan our NYS “partner” has now abandoned.

This is not a sustainable model for WMCHealth, which also provides capital and operational funding support to its other hospitals within the Network.

The most unfortunate part: All of this can be avoided if New York State would continue to work within the same spirit of collaboration with which the plan began and recognize what is obvious, that the fundamentals of our agreement have been outdated for years since the onset of the pandemic.

We need your support to restore funding commitments to HealthAlliance. Please fill out this letter to tell the Governor’s Office to prioritize healthcare for the residents of Ulster and Delaware counties.