Facing a deficit this year, University of Connecticut Health Center are asking state lawmakers for a multi-million dollar bailout.
The $22 million request came before the Legislatureâ€™s Appropriations Committee, which is set to vote on the issue later today. Co-Chair Senator Toni Harp says that the hospital has public responsibilities, so the state should support some of its costs.
â€œThere are many states that pay a larger portion of their public hospitals. Weâ€™ve basically been very lucky that weâ€™ve only had to pay the 18 percent and they've had deficiency for three years.â€
At the beginning of the legislative session, state budget director Robert Genuario recommended $10.9 million for the hospital.
But some committee members are still concerned about the hospital operating in the red. UConn hospital officials say there are three structural issues that pose challenges for the hospital-- the hospital's small size, the distribution of hospital beds and benefits paid to its public employees.
Last year, the Legislature commissioned an independent entity to look at the hospital's budget shortfalls.
One of its recommendations, which is supported by Harp, suggests that regional hospitals pool their resources to create a quasi-public hospital.