State Health Department Announces $450 Million in Funding to Help Health Care Providers Statewide Improve Care by Restructuring Facilities

ALBANY, N. Y., November 28, 2011 - New York State Commissioner of Health Nirav R. Shah, M.D, M.P.H., today announced that $450 million in grant funding will be available early in 2012 to help health care facilities improve primary and community-based care, eliminate excess bed capacity, and reduce over-reliance on inpatient care in hospitals and nursing homes.

This funding will support a recommendation of the Medicaid Redesign Team (MRT) convened by Governor Andrew Cuomo to improve healthcare by helping health care facilities deliver more efficient, higher quality care by restructuring, merging, and realigning their operations.

"These funds will be a critical tool in addressing the needs of institutions across that state that are working to transition to a more sustainable, patient-centered approach that will provide better health care options for more New Yorkers," Commissioner Shah said.

The awards are supported through the Healthcare Efficiency and Affordability Law for New Yorkers (HEAL) and the Federal-State Health Reform Partnership (F-SHRP)

The Request For Applications (RFA) encourages collaborative projects between health care providers, such as shared services agreements, bed consolidations, joint governance arrangements mergers and closures. Awards will primarily support capital projects, such as the conversion of hospital inpatient space to outpatient and ambulatory care and of inpatient nursing home capacity to assisted living and other less restrictive forms of long-term care. Awards also will support certain operational activities, including the organizational changes necessary for mergers and other collaborative activities.

Under this RFA, some facilities could be eligible for temporary increases in their Medicaid payment rates, including hospitals, nursing homes, diagnostic and treatment centers (clinics) and certified home health agencies (CHHA's). These rate adjustments will support the costs of operational activities designed to help ensure a smooth transition to the delivery of more efficient and appropriate services resulting from mergers, consolidations, bed reductions, closures and other restructuring activities.

This program is jointly administered by the state Department of Health and the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York. The RFA and application materials are available on the Department of Health Web site at: