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Jones aims to protect safety-net hospitalsToday, State Senator Emil Jones III (D - CHICAGO) joined elected officials at Roseland Community Hospital to discuss the financial future of Roseland and safety-net hospitals around the state.

“Safety-net hospitals provide quality health care to the poorest communities, which is something that all people in Illinois deserve, regardless of their race or income,” said Jones. “These hospitals also employ an estimated 25,000 people in Illinois and 23,000 people across the Chicagoland area.”

To remain at a sustainable funding level for the year, Roseland has laid off nearly seven percent of its staff and reduced the pay of all of its doctors and nurses. As of now, all “fixed payments” to hospitals will sunset on June 30, 2018. The hospital assessment program, a combination of state and federal funds that provides financial relief across the state, is up for negotiation, creating uncertainty among safety-net hospitals.

“Ensuring safety-net hospital funding for the next fiscal year has to be a top priority in Springfield,” Jones said. “Roseland, along with many other hospitals, is suffering tremendously—they cannot stand to lose any federal dollars.”

In the past, it has taken each hospital assessment 12-15 months for federal approval. It is estimated that taxed payments account for almost 50 percent of all payments to safety-net hospitals.

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