Hospital Emergency Preparedness Funding Decreases
The federal government’s support for hospital emergency preparedness for the coming year is decreasing again. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the Assistant Secretary for Emergency Preparedness and Response has announced that for the grant program fiscal year 2009-2010 of the Hospital Preparedness Program (HPP), New York State will receive $12,628,147 and New York City will receive a separate grant of $9,481,964.
This represents a significant decrease in funding over the last two years. For grant program fiscal year 2008-2009, New York State received $13,941,707 and New York City received $10,454,772. For the 2007-2008 grant year, New York State received $14,561,258 and New York City received $10,913,604.
President Obama’s proposed federal fiscal year (FFY) 2010 budget includes an increase in funding for HPP, but Congress has yet to act on appropriations for FFY 2010. Funding proposed in the 2010 budget, if enacted, would not become available until the 2010-2011 grant year, causing hospitals to struggle under the funding cuts that have been implemented over the last two years.
HANYS believes that decreases in emergency preparedness funding are unacceptable as providers struggle in a difficult financial environment to implement needed preparedness programs, equipment, and training. HANYS continues to advocate for increased funding to achieve the highest possible level of preparedness for emergencies, both natural and man-made.
HPP enhances the ability of hospitals and health care systems to prepare for and respond to bioterrorism and other public health emergencies. The funds have also improved bed and personnel surge capacity, decontamination capabilities, isolation capacity, pharmaceutical supplies, training, education, drills, and exercises. Current program priority areas include interoperable communication systems, bed tracking, personnel management, fatality management planning, and hospital evacuation planning. Contact: Christopher Smith