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Schumer Announces Senate Poised To Restore Billions In Administration Cuts To New York Hospitals

Administration's Proposals Called for Slashing Benefits to Teaching Hospitals and NYC's Public Hospital System: Senate to Vote on Bill to Prevent Cuts

Senate to Protect Graduate Medical Education Program that Provides More than $550 Million a Year to New York State Teaching Hospitals

Senator Charles E. Schumer today praised passage in the Senate Appropriations Committee of a bill that will block hospital spending cuts sought by the Administration. The full Senate is expected to vote on the measure next week. Senator Schumer challenged the Administration on the cuts and has been working with Senate colleagues to restore the funding. The Supplemental Funding bill also prevents the elimination of the Medicaid Graduate Medical Education program, which provides funding to teaching hospitals.

"New York's public hospitals rely on federal funds to keep their doors open and to keep their quality of service high. Today, we've voted to make sure those doors stay open and New York City's hospitals receive the funding they need and deserve. New York is also facing significant doctor shortages, yet the President's proposals placed restrictions on funding for graduate medical education programs. This amendment will make sure that we don't have a shortage in funding for our graduate medical education and that assistance payments are readily available for medical and nursing students," Schumer said.

In January, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services proposed a regulation that would have cut nearly $350 million annually from the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC). This regulation, which was part of the President's 2007 budget, would have been enacted this September if Congress did not intervene. In addition, the President's proposed 2008 budget called for the elimination of the Medicaid Graduate Medical Education program. If enacted, this proposal would have cut funding for teaching hospitals across New York State by an average of more than $550 million annually, totaling $2.7 billion over the next five years. New York teaching hospitals train one out of every seven doctors in this country. Senator Schumer grilled Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Leavitt on both of these cuts when he appeared before the Senate Finance Committee earlier this year. The Supplemental Funding bill, as passed by the Appropriations Committee this week, would prevent both of these cuts from being enacted this year. The full Senate is expected to vote on the funding bill next week.