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Sun May 26, 2019, 01:21 AM

The Accelerated Plan to Close United Medical Center May Have Disastrous Consequences for Patients

The Accelerated Plan to Close United Medical Center May Have Disastrous Consequences for Patients and Staff


Ward 7 Councilmember Vince Gray’s legacy hinges on his ability to bring a new, equitable health care system to the residents of Southeast D.C. His newest plan to get it done has critics asking: At what cost?

In a series of proposals in the Fiscal Year 2020 budget, the D.C. Council’s Committee on Health, which Gray chairs, moved to cut the subsidy to the city’s only existing hospital in Southeast, the troubled United Medical Center. Gray is also pushing to accelerate the construction of a replacement community hospital on the St. Elizabeths campus—a goal he’s pursued since his time as mayor.

But with UMC still seeing patients, and no deal currently in place with George Washington University Hospital, the city’s preferred operator for the new facility, hospital workers are concerned for their jobs and say patients’ lives could be at risk.

Last week, the D.C. Council approved Gray’s proposal to cut UMC’s subsidy to $15 million per year. UMC would maintain its emergency department and its psychiatric unit; its board will have leeway to add more services as long as the costs don’t exceed a $15 million budget.

Read more: https://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/news/loose-lips/article/21070008/the-accelerated-plan-to-close-united-medical-center-may-have-disastrous-consequences-for-patients-and-staff

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