Patients in Need are Stunned and Dunned

Posted February, 13 2012 by arianne

The New York Times put hospital financial assistance, a long-time HCFANY priority for reform, on the front page today with an article called “Hospitals Flout Charity Aid Law.” The article presents findings of a new report by the Community Service Society of New York, “Incentivizing Patient Financial Assistance: How to Fix New York’s Hospital Financial Indigent Care Program” and profiles stories of New Yorkers who have been harmed by hospitals’ failure to offer them financial assistance.

New York’s financial assistance law requires hospitals that receive some of the $1.2 billion in state and federal funding distributed to New York hospitals to cover uncompensated care to: offer sliding scale assistance to uninsured and underinsured patients with income up to 300% of poverty; have a simple application form and materials that explain how to apply; help patients complete the application; and follow strict rules for how to collect payments from patients who qualify.

Do you need help with hospital bills?

  • You can look for your hospital’s financial assistance application on the Community Health Advocates webpage here.
  • If you need help applying, you can call the CHA helpline at 1-888-614-5400.
  • If you have not been able to get the financial assistance you need and would be willing to tell your story, email us at or give us a call at 212-614-5401.