Senate approves President Ruggerio’s bill to place
one-year moratorium on for-profit hospital conversions

 

 

STATE HOUSE – The Senate on Thursday approved President Dominick J. Ruggerio’s legislation to impose a one-year moratorium on hospital ownership transactions involving for-profit corporations.

 

The bill (S-2022 2610A) would amend the Hospital Conversion Act to require a one-year pause “on the conversion of any hospital governed by this act if the acquiree or acquirer is a for-profit corporation.”

 

The moratorium would provide the General Assembly and regulators with time to conduct a comprehensive review of for-profit hospital ownership, as well as its impact on hospital finances and the health care system as a whole.

 

“Any hospital transaction must improve care and protect Rhode Island’s patients, workers and communities. All Rhode Islanders deserve care that is accessible and affordable,” President Ruggerio said. “In recent years, the widespread impact of Memorial Hospital’s closure, as well as questions surrounding the dependability and financial stability of for-profit ownership at other local institutions, including Fatima and Roger Williams, have demonstrated the need for vigilance. This legislation will ensure our state can comprehensively review the issue of for-profit hospital ownership and protect our network of hospitals, which is essential to the well-being of Rhode Islanders.”

 

The legislation was cosponsored by Senate Majority Leader Michael J. McCaffrey (D-Dist. 29, Warwick), Senate Majority Whip Maryellen Goodwin (D-Dist. 1, Providence), Sen. Joshua Miller (D-Dist. 28, Cranston, Providence), Sen. Ryan W. Pearson (D-Dist. 19, Cumberland), Sen. Hanna M. Gallo (D-Dist. 27, Cranston, West Warwick), and Sen. Cynthia A. Coyne (D-Dist. 32, Barrington, Bristol, East Providence).

 

The proposal will now be referred to the House of Representatives for consideration.

 

Tensions are running high after an explosive meeting in the Texas town of Uvalde [[ yoo-VAHL-dee ]] where 19 students and two teachers were murdered in a massacre. Relatives of the victims lashed out at the city leaders, demanding accountability. Velma Duran lost her sister Irma, who was a teacher at Robb Elementary. She says victims' families have been stonewalled by the Uvalde District Attorney who's refusing to release information about the investigation.       Gas prices are down from their recent all-time high, but it'll still cost Americans a pretty penny to hit the road this holiday weekend. Triple A says the nationwide average price is four-84 a gallon. It was sitting at just three-12 a gallon this time last year.        Ukrainian President Zelensky says the U.S. decision to send more assistance to his country is historic. The Pentagon announced a new 820-million-dollar package of military supplies to be sent to the war-torn nation as it fights off the Russian invasion. Zelensky thanked President Biden for his "continued leadership and support" of Ukraine in its war against Russia.        The WHO says urgent action is needed after monkeypox cases tripled in two weeks in Europe. Over 90-percent of cases confirmed of the virus have been found in Europe as they've been reported in 31 European countries. Monkeypox is a viral disease that occurs mostly in central and western Africa.       Uber is releasing its latest safety report and the number of sexual assaults. According to company, it received just over 38-hundred reports of sexual assault and misconduct from 2019 through 2020. That's a 38 percent decrease from their prior report from 2017 through 2018.       "Minions: The Rise of Gru" is reeling in over ten-million-dollars in Thursday previews from domestic box offices. The latest entry in the "Despicable Me" franchise is expected to bring in between 65- and 75-million-dollars over the holiday weekend. That puts it on pace to be the lowest first week opening since the original film released in 2010.