Today’s news:

Boro health care facilities get $49 million from state

Queens hospitals have received nearly $50 million from the state to improve and ensure patient care, increase employee salaries, and put themselves on a stronger financial footing.

Gov. George Pataki announced the money was part of more than $807 million in health care funding for New York City to aid local hospitals and nursing homes under the Health Care Workforce Recruitment and Retention Act that the state Assembly passed last Thursday.

“This historic legislation will help to ensure quality health care for families and individuals throughout New York City,” Pataki said. “This comprehensive health care plan will ensure that our nursing homes have qualified, compassionate nurses, our hospitals have the highly trained staff they need, and our poor and most vulnerable citizens get the quality care they deserve in our vital community health care systems.”

The $49,924,033 earmarked for 11 borough hospitals will be distributed over the next three years. Pataki said the money will enable the city’s health-care facilities to raise health care workers’ salaries, improve career training and supplement hiring packages.

“It is time for us to take care of the people who take care of our sick and precious elderly,” said state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan).

“The Health Care Workforce Recruitment and Retention Act,” he said, “will help us support these workers, while also creating a charitable foundation to build upon our existing network of community and public health programs and advancing new programs to address our heath care and insurance coverage needs in the future.”

The borough hospitals that received funding were Flushing Medical Center ($2,769,486); Jamaica Hospital ($5,891,792); Long Island Jewish ($11,856,013); Peninsula Hospital Center ($1,896,058); Catholic Medical Centers of Brooklyn and Queens ($7,931,182); New York Hospital Medical Center Queens ($6,023,072); North Shore Medical Center-Forest Hills ($1,874,326); Mount Sinai Hospital of Queens ($893,511); Parkway Hospital ($1,521,312); City Hospital Center at Elmhurst ($5,705,728); and Queens Hospital Center ($3,372,513).

Long Island hospitals used by Queens residents were given $22,519,157 in total: North Shore University Hospital at Glen Cove ($2,464,341); Franklin Hospital Medical Center ($1,646,644); North Shore University Hospital at Manhasset ($16,492,021); and North Shore University Hospital at Plainview ($1,916,151).

A number of Queens nursing homes and after-care programs also received funding, including the Margaret Tietz Center for Nursing Care in Jamaica ($1,512,625); Queens Boulevard Extended Care Facility (2,183,497); and the Rego Park Nursing Home ($1,854,602).

Reach reporter Adam Kramer by e-mail at Timesledgr@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 157.

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