New York county approves $5M cash infusion to address hospital backlog

Monroe County, N.Y., leaders have approved $5 million in cash infusions, part of the American Rescue Plan Act, to alleviate hospital backlogs, reported Nov. 15.

The money will be used to incentivize local nursing homes to accept patients with acute medical needs and behavioral health needs. Prior to the authorization of the funds, county officials debated whether the program would be a long-term fix for hospital backlogs and whether nursing homes would agree to take hard-to-place patients.

Staff at Rochester, N.Y.-based Finger Lakes Performing Provider System told county officials that the program is based on a similar program in Syracuse, N.Y.

"Right now people who are in the emergency room spend hours and days languishing in chairs, beds and hallways because there are no beds available in the inpatient units," Finger Lakes Executive Director Carol Tegas said. "All four hospitals are full every day largely because of the unprecedented number of hospitalizations that are occurring, and people languishing because they cannot move into nursing home beds."

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