Our hospital system is now in danger. Due to our nationwide economic downturn, the state of Alabama has cut nearly a billion dollars from the state budget. However, we still face a budget shortfall of $146 million. This will mean cuts in critical services across the state, including health care, nursing homes, schools and prisons. This is serious.
In Alabama, state-funded Medicaid covers two-thirds of all nursing-home residents and 40 percent of all children. It is imperative that our hospitals continue to receive this money to provide care for all the patients in our community. Fortunately, there is a solution that doesn’t require us to raise taxes. Alabama voters can move money from our trust fund into the General Fund budget. The trust fund currently has $2.4 billion. All that is required is a vote from the people in the form of a constitutional amendment. On Sept. 18, we will have the opportunity to save not only our hospitals, but our nursing homes, schools and prison system by voting yes to the referendum. In order to save the excellent health care of Calhoun County, vote yes on Sept. 18.