In an opinion piece in the New York Daily News, Dr. Steven J. Corwin, president and CEO of NewYork-Presbyterian, and Dr. Philip O. Ozuah, president and CEO of Montefiore Medicine, highlight why teaching hospitals must be supported and nurtured.
“These world-class facilities are staffed by exceptionally skilled doctors and nurses, train tomorrow’s physicians, conduct cutting-edge research, and deliver highly specialized clinical care to the most severely ill and injured patients. Their doors are open 24-7 to care for all New Yorkers, including the underserved. In short, they are the cornerstones of healthy communities and local economies,” they write.
Representing two major New York City health care systems, Dr. Corwin and Dr. Ozuah outline the numerous ways that the area’s teaching hospitals are integral to serving and improving communities.
“It is a common misperception that teaching hospitals do not care for the poor, the uninsured, and other underserved communities. In reality, they are often the primary health care providers for these populations. … In 2021, the Commonwealth Fund Task Force on Academic Health Centers found that teaching hospitals provide significantly more free care to the poor and uninsured than any other hospitals.”
In addition to improving access to health care, these systems are leading the way in medical breakthroughs, training the next generation of health care workers, and creating jobs for the city. “According to the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), spending by New York’s medical schools and teaching hospitals supports more than 600,000 jobs and contributes more than $76 billion to New York’s economy,” they write.
However, they remind readers that teaching hospitals are not immune to a challenging economy, rising costs, and workforce shortages. They issued a call to action: “New York’s teaching hospitals must be constantly nurtured and never taken for granted. … It’s up to everyone, but especially our elected officials, to recognize the importance of teaching hospitals to our health and well-being, and to protect and help strengthen them accordingly.”
Read the full piece here.