Nashville safety-net hospital requests $19.7M infusion to get through June 30

Nashville (Tenn.) General Hospital, a city-owned safety-net hospital, is requesting $19.7 million in funding to finance operations through June 30, according to The Tennessean.

If the Metro Council, the legislative authority of the Metropolitan Government of Nashville, grants the hospital's request, city funding for Nashville General would total $54 million for the fiscal year.

The Metropolitan Hospital Authority, which operates Nashville General, receives a subsidy of $35 million each year from the Metro Council. However, Nashville General has needed supplemental funds to stay afloat for the past two years.

In late 2016, the Metropolitan Hospital Authority's board requested a $16 million funding infusion, which was approved by the Metro Council in February. The hospital requested and was granted $10 million in supplemental funding in February 2016.

The hospital requested a nearly $20 million funding increase for the 2017-18 fiscal year. However, Nashville Mayor Megan Barry's administration kept the facility's funding at $35 million.

According to The Tennessean, Ms. Barry said her administration would approve additional funding for Nashville General three weeks ago when she revealed plans to end inpatient services at the hospital June 30.

However, the city's finance department has questions about the funding request. Talia Lomax-O'dneal, Metro Nashville's director of finance, recently sent a letter to Nashville General's board that included about two dozen questions regarding the hospital's patient visits, cash flow, operating plans and rationale for specific allotments, according to the report.

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