Sen. Chuck Schumer announced Friday that Upstate New York hospitals may receive an annual boost of nearly one billion dollars under proposed changes to Medicare wage payments, potentially alleviating financial and staffing challenges faced by these medical facilities.
The increased funding could attract more doctors and nurses, reducing waiting times and improving appointment availability for patients. Schumer is launching an “all-out push” to ensure the proposal is finalized, including gathering public input and approval.
In a statement, Rochester Regional Health expressed gratitude to Schumer for his advocacy and optimism that the rule change would begin to address years of Medicare underfunding. The healthcare system currently receives approximately $0.84 for every dollar spent on Medicare patients.
Despite the potential financial relief, Rochester Regional Health announced the layoff of 60 employees, primarily in non-clinical and management positions. The organization is offering severance packages, continued medical and dental benefits during the severance period, and access to an Employee Assistance Program. Affected employees will also have the opportunity to seek other positions within the health system.
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