Sen. Ritchie calls on governeor to take financial strain off agencies like United Helpers
Friday, May 22, 2020 - 9:27 am

State Sen. Patty Ritchie is calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to fund COVID-19 measures to take financial strain off of agencies like United Helpers.

United Helpers earlier this week released a statement saying they may be in danger of closing without assistance from the state.

Albany is now mandating that all nursing homes test each employee and resident for COVID-19 twice per week.

Ritchie, R-Heuvelton, thinks the state should pay for that.

She said “while I agree steps need to be taken to protect those in long-term care facilities from COVID-19, these newly imposed mandates are crippling not only for United Helpers, but also for many other providers across our state. This administration needs to step up and fund the tests they are mandating so facilities can continue to provide vitally important care to those who need it most.”

United Helpers CEO Steve Knight said the organization was having financial troubles stemming from low reimbursement rates prior to the pandemic.

“I have spent the last several years proactively communicating our financial concerns to New York State and our elected officials. United Helpers' nursing homes have been underfunded for years with no trend factor increase to our Medicaid rates since 2008. Rural nursing homes are especially challenged due to reimbursement methodologies and several unique market characteristics,” United Helpers CEO Stephen Knight said in an email. More details are here.


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