LOWVILLE, N.Y. - Senator Charles Schumer visited Lewis County General Hospital Tuesday, holding a press conference on federal funding for rural hospitals .
Schumer is sounding the alarm on Medicaid cuts to “Disproportionate Share Hospital Program” at rural hospitals.
The program was designed to help rural hospitals serve a higher number of low income and uninsured patients.
Lewis County General Hospital is one of Lewis County’s largest employers, and without the hospital there wouldn’t be care close by for those living in the area and jobs for those in the healthcare profession close to home.
Schumer says the patients deserve first-rate care, regardless of their ability to pay. And this isn’t just at rural hospitals like Lewis County General, it’s all over the country.
“A high number of uninsured or underinsured or low-income patients that should get help. Unlike the other things I have done for rural hospitals this isn't just aimed at rural hospitals. It helps a lot of hospitals. But our rural hospitals because they have all these great burdens run at a very thin margin. And so, any extra hit on the head from the federal government could really hurt.” Schumer said.
Schumer is calling on his colleagues in congress to stop the Medicaid DSH cuts, so hospitals can continue to provide a high level of care across the region.