ABOUT THE NEW YORK CITY HEALTH CARE SYSTEM
Since it's first case was identified in late February, NYC has had more than 211,000 residents infected with COVID and over 21,000 deaths, the majority of which have been people of color and those who live in lower income areas of New York. The economic divide in New York City is now more evident than ever. While higher income families have the ability to stay in the safety of their home or even escape the city to wait out the pandemic, essential workers must risk their lives every day just to stay afloat. Areas in the Bronx, Brooklyn, and Queens, home to many essential workers and lower income families have been hit the hardest. While every hospital in New York City has struggled to keep up with the cases of Covid-19 and has lost significant amounts of money due to lack of usual revenue streams, it is public hospitals and smaller private hospitals in poorer neighborhoods of New York that have been more harshly affected by the virus. The report, “On Restructuring the NYC Health+Hospitals Corporation — Preserving and Expanding Access to Care for All New Yorkers” provides an analysis of the critical role of the city’s public hospital network. According to the report, NYC H+H provides costs and services that private hospitals attempt to avoid, including a disproportionate share of care for the un- and under-insured (NYS Nurse's Association). The New York City healthcare system relies on public hospitals to support and serve poorer areas of New York, and it is these hospitals that are struggling the most with the rise of Covid-19.
Elmhurst Hospital Center, a public Hospital in Queens, taken by Ryan Christopher Jones with the New York Times
Tents set up by Elmhurst Hospital Center in response to the need for Covid-19 testing (NYT)