Neal tours Baystate Franklin, discusses Medicaid waiver that could mean $470K annually for hospital

  • Congressman Richard E. Neal, left, tours the new surgical suites at the Baystate Franklin Medical Center with Jill Powell, registered nurse and surgical services administrator, in Greenfield on Tuesday. Recorder photo

  • Congressman Richard E. Neal, left, tours the new surgical suites at the Baystate Franklin Medical Center in Greenfield with hospital staff and officials on Tuesday. Recorder Staff/Paul Franz

  • Congressman Richard E. Neal, center, tours the new surgical suites at the Baystate Franklin Medical Center with Daren Gray, director of support services at Baystate, and Jill Powell, registered nurse and surgical services administrator, in Greenfield on Tuesday, November 22, 2016. Recorder Staff/Paul Franz

For the Gazette
Published: 11/23/2016 10:02:32 PM

GREENFIELD — Baystate Franklin Medical Center stands to gain $470,000 a year extra in government payments because of a Medicaid waiver granted the state, Congressman Richard E. Neal pointed out Tuesday.

The payment is an acknowledgement there is an underserved population in the area, said Neal, a Democrat representing the 1st Congressional District of Massachusetts. He visited Baystate Franklin to tour its new state-of-the-art surgical suite and to discuss health issues facing Franklin County.

Baystate Franklin and Baystate Medical Center in Springfield will, starting next year, participate in the five-year, $52.4 billion waiver program, which is a partnership between hospitals and state and federal governments aimed at improving efficiency in the application of care provided to Medicaid patients during funding shortfalls in reimbursements for that care.

Baystate Health President and CEO Mark Keroack said the $470,000 a year for Baystate Franklin is set against roughly a $4 million loss from the Medicaid program. He said the hospital is the only one in the county and its sole Medicaid provider.

Neal said getting included in the waiver was Baystate Health’s highest priority.

“It was very welcomed news for us,” he said.

Neal’s tour included the hospital’s newly surgery center, which opened on June 27. Hospital officials said the wing cost $26 million, including $5 million in public contributions.

Keroack mentioned the hospital has highest rate of natural delivery births in the state and some women travel more than an hour to get to Baystate Franklin.

Neal mentioned times have greatly changed since he was a child, when people had to go to Boston for top-notch medical care.

You can reach Domenic Poli at: dpoli@recorder.com or 413-772-0261, ext. 258. On Twitter: @DomenicPoli




Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

115 Conz Street
Northampton, MA 01061
413-584-5000

 

Copyright © 2020 by H.S. Gere & Sons, Inc.
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy