Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Cost Of Quality Care

We've had occasion to make several trips to HoCo General over the years, and we are grateful for the professionalism. But there's always a measure to sticker shock when the bills arrive.

Health care costs keep going up. Employers keep shifting more of the cost of insurance onto employees. And now here's another hit to the proverbial pocketbook.

From the county:

ELLICOTT CITY, MD – County Executive Ken Ulman recently announced a $4 million grant award to Howard County General Hospital, which was approved by the County Council to help with the large-scale capital project currently underway to renovate and expand the Johns Hopkins-owned facility. Per the agreement, Howard County General Hospital will receive the first installment of $3.5 million now with a follow-up payment of $.5 million in April.

“Since Howard County General Hospital first opened its doors thirty years ago, they have been providing the very best in quality health care to our community,” said Ulman. “As our population has grown, so has the demand for patient care, and that is not likely to change as the first wave of baby boomers turn 60. This new pavilion and parking garage will help the hospital meet those increasing health care needs.”

“The entire hospital family, including our 1,700+ employees, 800+ members of our medical staff and 1,000 volunteers are very grateful to County Executive Ulman and the five members of the County Council for this outstanding, and generous investment, which will allow us to expand and enhance our health care services, and transform how we care for the community,” said Vic Broccolino, President and CEO of Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine is a private, not-for-profit community health care provider. First opened in 1973 with 59 beds, the hospital has evolved into a 219-bed comprehensive, acute-care medical center. Last year alone, the hospital had nearly 14,000 admissions; performed nearly 13,000 surgical procedures; delivered over 2,800 babies; and treated more than 75,000 patients in the Emergency Department

The hospital hopes to raise a total of $30 million in private donations to complete the project which is expected to cost a total of $105 million. The pavilion is scheduled for completion in late 2009. The entire project will be complete in 2011.

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