To the Editor:
The Illinois Hospital Association (IHA) is pleased that Governor Quinn today signed a series of bills that are of great importance to patients and the state's health care delivery system. We applaud the Governor and the Illinois General Assembly for their hard work and courage in making difficult decisions during these challenging economic times and for their commitment to the health of Illinoisans.
The hospital community appreciates that the Administration and state lawmakers listened to our concerns, considered IHA's 12-point plan on Medicaid savings and reforms, and incorporated many of our recommendations in Senate Bill 2840. We commend the General Assembly for passing Senate Bill 2194, which includes critically needed support for the Medicaid program from a cigarette tax increase and an enhanced Hospital Assessment Program, as well as clear and workable criteria on the hospital tax-exemption issue.
Illinois hospitals treat patients 24 hours a day, seven days a week, providing care to those who do not have the financial means to pay for the treatment they need, including charity care to one million Illinoisans every year. Hospitals are critical to Illinois, not only as health care providers, but also as major job creators and economic engines. Hospitals provide nearly 425,000 direct and indirect jobs to Illinoisans and generate a statewide economic impact of nearly $79 billion a year.
IHA and the hospital community look forward to continuing our partnership with the state, the Administration, and the General Assembly, working together to implement the critical details of the new laws and to meet the health care challenges that still lie ahead.
Maryjane A. Wurth, President and CEO
Illinois Hospital Association
To the Editor:
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