Dear Lourdes Supporter:
New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine recently announced his proposed budget for SFY 2010, and I wrote to offer him my congratulations on doing an admirable job in extraordinarily daunting circumstances. I also reminded him that adequate, fair, and equitable charity care funding will become more critical than ever to the future of Lourdes Health System and hospitals throughout our state.
I told the Governor that New Jersey’s health-care providers are pleased — and greatly relieved — that in his proposal he has recognized the importance of prioritizing spending for charity care. Faced with many tough choices in an exceptionally difficult budget year, that was certainly a prudent one.
As expected, the number of uninsured hospital patients continues to increase as the economy worsens. With no economic turnaround in sight, adequate charity care funding will remain essential in helping both to safeguard New Jerseyans’ access to care and to sustain the financial viability of our state’s struggling hospitals. Clearly, nowhere is this more true than in our urban centers, served by essential safety-net hospitals.
On behalf of Lourdes Health System and its Catholic Health East New Jersey affiliates, I urged the Governor to ensure that adequate charity care funding in the aggregate translates into fair and equitable distribution of reimbursements, particularly with respect to those hospitals with a strong and enduring tradition of charitable service to the poor. In the months ahead, we will be working with Governor Corzine and with our representatives in the Legislature to make this happen.
Alexander J. Hatala
President and CEO
Lourdes Health System and
Catholic Health East New Jersey
Tags: charity care