Comptroller Stringer Investigation Finds Insufficient Preparedness and Coordination Hindered NYC H+H Response to COVID-19 Pandemic
Letter to Governor Cuomo highlights need for improved coordination across all parts of the healthcare system and better planning and preparedness
Findings show we must address underlying inequities in access to health care that resulted in a disproportionate death rate among the City’s most vulnerable populations and strained H+H capacity and systems
New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer sent a letter to Governor Andrew Cuomo providing the results of a review into NYC Health + Hospital’s (H+H) response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The review identified several deficiencies in preparedness and execution at all levels, from the federal government down to individual hospitals, including inadequate access to needed supplies and equipment, confusing and medically inappropriate guidance, a lack of systems and procedures for managing patient loads across hospitals, and insufficient protocols for deploying staff.
Comptroller Stringer’s review also showed that H+H’s challenges arose due in part to insufficient support, assistance, and guidance from the City, State, and federal governments. The Comptroller stressed that H+H’s ability to deliver proper health care to communities that need it the most requires the assistance of all levels of government, including sufficient funding, established coordination policies and procedures, and the support of its governmental and private partners.
As a result of the review, Comptroller Stringer outlined recommendations to better prepare for and manage a potential resurgence of COVID-19 patients, as well as future public health emergencies, including establishing formal coordination and guidance mechanisms among all parts of the healthcare system; improved protocols for staff training and deployment of resources; and identifying and remedying supply chain weaknesses.