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Money Delay For Pr. George's Hospital

Anne Bartlett

Officials with the Prince George's County hospital system said this week they have not received the first installment of state and county money that was promised under a new law and was intended to prop up the troubled system while a new buyer is sought.

According to a law passed by the General Assembly this year, the state and county will each give the system $12 million a year for the next two years.

Meanwhile, a seven-member panel will accept bids from health-care companies interested in buying the hospital system, which is owned by the county and managed by the non-profit Dimensions Healthcare System.

The law requires that the county and the state provide the funding in installments, at the beginning of each quarter of the fiscal year. The first quarter of this year began July 1.

But Suzanne Almalel, a spokeswoman for Dimensions, said that as of Tuesday, neither side had provided the funding. State officials asked hospital officials Monday for information about wiring the funds, she said, indicating that their payment might be on its way.

The hospital system regularly loses money and requires public subsidies to remain open. It has long tussled with the county over payments, including instances in which public pronouncements that funding would be forthcoming were followed by long delays in the arrival of dollars.

An earlier version of the law would have penalized the county for late payments, but the provision was dropped as the bill made its way through the legislative process.

County spokesman James P. Keary said Tuesday that Prince George's was preparing the paperwork to give the hospital $2.8 million and that delivery of the money was expected by the end of this week.

By Anne Bartlett  |  August 7, 2008; 10:03 AM ET
Categories:  Rosalind Helderman  
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County and State are each required to give $12m a year. That's a lot a Pizza.

Posted by: Count Bobulescu | August 9, 2008 2:34 AM | Report abuse

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