By John Suayan | The Center Square
Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, hospitals throughout New Hampshire have had to adjust operations and procedures in order to prioritize patients stricken with the coronavirus and maintain the health and safety of front line workers.
Almost six months into the outbreak, New Hampshire hospitals have hemorrhaged millions. Kathy Bizarro-Thunberg, the executive vice president of the New Hampshire Hospital Association, told the Concord Monitor that a combined $575 million in revenue was lost between March and July.
The shortfall could be attributed to Granite State hospitals eschewing profitable services like elective surgeries and cardiac care. Though more non-coronavirus patients are returning for appointments, hospitals are still expected to lose $700 million by the end of 2020.
The Monitor reported that $300 million of federal CARES Act funding went toward the state’s hospitals. At a roundtable discussion with U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan, Bizarro-Thunberg divulged that hospitals would still need more federal assistance.
The CARES allocation was conducted in two phases: the first phase saw money given to hospitals at the center of the state’s coronavirus hot spots, while rural hospitals received funding during the second phase.
Catholic Medical Center in Manchester is one of the hospitals projected to slide deeper in the red, even with CARES money. CMC chief operating officer Alex Walker said his hospital, which was not awarded funding in any of the phases, will lose $40 million by the end of next month.
“COVID has had a devastating effect on our finances,” Walker told the Monitor. “It’s had an impact on hospitals in New Hampshire, but for us in particular, we’ve been at ground zero.”