New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation (HHC) takes care of the Big Apple. HHC has facilities in all five boroughs of New York City. As one of the largest municipal health service systems in the US, HHC serves 1.3 million New Yorkers and more than 450,000 who are uninsured. It operates a health care network consisting of 11 acute care hospitals (including Bellevue, the nation's oldest public hospital), diagnostic and treatment centers, long-term care facilities, and a home health care agency. HHC also operates more than 80 community-based clinics and provides medical services to New York City's correctional facilities. In addition, it operates MetroPlus, a managed health care plan.
For its fiscal year 2011 budget, HHC projected a deficit of about $1.1 billion. The factors that contributed to the shortfall included the loss of federal supplemental Medicaid funding in Disproportionate Share Hospital and Upper Payment Limit funding and continued reductions in state funding for Medicaid reimbursements, the costs of treating rising numbers of uninsured patients, and skyrocketing pension and health insurance benefit costs for employees.
The hospital system responded by implementing a hiring freeze, cutting back on its capital improvements program, and targeting a number of programs for closure. HHC has also reduced its workforce since 2008 by more than 1,000 through attrition and the hiring freeze, and it cut hundreds more positions in 2010. Other restructuring efforts included consolidating some services to fewer locations and regionalizing certain non-patient care services. – less