BellinHealth, a nonprofit that operates the state’s only publicly funded hospital and health care system, has seen a significant drop in patients since the state shuttered its emergency room system.
The Trump administration’s budget blueprint cuts Medicaid funding, leaving BellinCare with $1.5 billion less to pay for its emergency rooms.
But Bellin’s medical staff is now struggling to keep up with the demand for care and is on the brink of bankruptcy.
The company announced last week that it was closing its emergency department for the first time in its 40-year history, after it was closed to treat people with mental illness, and said it would need $10 million in savings to stay open.
The decision to close Bellin is not the first to affect the state of New York.
Last week, the New York State Health Department announced that it would phase out its entire outpatient psychiatric system, including mental health care.
But the department’s decision was a surprise to the hospital and its staff.
“It’s been a really tough week,” said Maria Crespo, an emergency room doctor and a co-founder of Bellin.
“We’re just so overwhelmed by the volume of patients and the patients that we’re dealing with.”
New York’s emergency room emergency room has seen an explosion in calls since the shutdown.
According to state health department data, emergency rooms for the mentally ill, including people with major depression, schizophrenia and other mental illnesses, have increased by more than 100 percent since Trump took office.
Crespo said that the spike in emergency room calls stems in part from Bellin shutting down the ER.
“It was just an act of desperation.
Bellin was literally running out of money, and we were all basically in a state of panic,” she said.
The health department said it plans to close the ER at least until at least October.
A spokesperson for Bellin said the hospital will begin to reopen on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a statement that he is “deeply concerned” by Bellin and will be reviewing its “business plans” to ensure the health care provider has a long-term plan.
TrumpCare is expected to eliminate the federal government’s responsibility for paying for mental health services, but it does not remove the responsibility for providing medical care.
“We’re deeply concerned by the fact that Bellin has no plan to continue providing care to those who are in crisis, or for the millions of Americans who need and deserve more than a quick trip to the ER,” Cuomo said.