UPMC Chautauqua in Jamestown is one of two hospitals in Chautauqua County that recently received millions of dollars in federal relief aid to help recoup losses because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We're extremely grateful for the money," said Brian Durniok, UPMC Chautauqua president.
Durniok is thankful for more than $10 million he says will help offset sharp declines in patient volume and several of the hospital's revenue streams since the pandemic.
Durniok says the hospital saw drops in emergency room traffic, inpatient stays, elective surgeries, and other general services.
"Certainly busier in June than we were in May. And May was busier than April, we're still seeing an impact," said Durniok.
Chief Financial Officer Brad Dinger says the funding will be used for supplies, lab equipment for COVID testing, workforce training, emergency operation centers, and infrastructure modifications.
Durniok say the money will also help bridge the hospital's startup costs in preparation for the pandemic.
“The $10 million is a substantial amount of money, is a wonderful thing and very beneficial. But the reality is we're still not back at the same volumes we had prior to the COVID," said Durniok.
"It obviously is a large sum of money, but it shows you the magnitude of the crisis," said Congressman Tom Reed, (R) 23rd Congressional District.
Rep. Reed recently announced the relief funding for area hospitals, including $5 million for Brooks Memorial in Dunkirk as well.
Money comes from the CARES Act, Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act for those on the front lines of care.
"When you turn off the business, the revenue, the hospital, overnight, that you have a significant problem that needs to be addressed. More money is still out there to come down the pipeline," said Reed.
It’s money UPMC will continue to apply for as it becomes available.
Until then, Durniok says he's keeping a watchful eye on the rest of the country, as the unpredictable virus is still out there.
"We need to continue to do all the things that helped us suppress the virus initially. We need to continue to wash our hands, we need to continue to wear masks, we need to continue to social distance," said Durniok.
In addition to UPMC and Brooks, Reed also secured $5 million in funding for Ira Davenport Memorial Hospital in Steuben County.