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Our Thanks and Gratitude During National Hospital Week

Hospitals are the backbone of the communities they serve and are there to provide care to all who need it, no matter the time or day of the week. And never have hospitals been more vital than throughout the pandemic. While we have always known that hospitals are critically important to our communities and to the state, the pandemic clearly showed just how important effective leadership and outstanding care are during a disaster.

The past year has brought so much sadness and heartbreak for many, but the triumph of the human spirit was exemplified by the resilience of your hospitals, health systems, and their dedicated caregivers who have made great sacrifices to serve their communities.

This week, as we celebrate National Hospital Week (May 9-15), we pause to recognize the hard work of your hospitals and health care workers over the past year. You stepped up when patients needed you the most. From front-line health care workers jumping into an unknown pandemic, to providing millions of COVID-19 tests and augmenting the supply chain for needed medical equipment and supplies, to providing the unbelievable care to Californians infected with COVID-19 and leading the vaccination efforts throughout California, hospitals have been there and will continue to be there. After everything your hospitals have endured, a week of celebrating hardly seems long enough.

Each and every day we are inspired by your work but acknowledge that these efforts have come at a significant financial cost to hospitals. This was confirmed in a recent Kaufman Hall report that showed just how devastating the pandemic has been on hospital finances and reinforced that the impacts of COVID-19 may linger for years to come:

  • California hospitals suffered financial losses of more than $14 billion in 2020 from COVID-19. Despite some assistance through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, this loss was reduced but still amounts to more than $8 billion.
  • Even with CARES Act support, 58% of hospitals lost money from operations, and another 13% struggle just to break even.
  • In 2021, California hospitals are expected to continue with an additional loss between $600 million and $2 billion due to COVID-19, depending on vaccination rates and the path of the virus.
  • More than 200 California hospitals could lose money from operations in 2021, and more than 250 could struggle to break even — more than before the pandemic.

More can and must be done to support your hospitals so they can continue their lifesaving work and make certain that they are around to celebrate National Hospital Week for years to come. We are working hard to ensure that our elected officials realize the significant financial toll that COVID-19 has had on the hospitals and health care systems that have served California throughout the pandemic.

The challenges are significant, but everyone who works in a hospital is there to ensure that the best quality health care is available to all Californians anytime that they need it. It is a privilege to represent hospitals that provide excellent care when people need it the most. We will continue to advocate and articulate the importance of supporting all hospitals during these very difficult times.


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