Hartford Hospital Cuts Funding to Program for New Mothers

Aug 6, 2014

Credit George Ruiz / Flickr

The city of Hartford and two hospitals jointly fund a program to check in on new mothers and their infants in their homes. The goal is to reduce infant mortality rates. But one of those hospitals has told the city it is pulling out. 

In a letter to the city, Hartford Hospital said "the decision was made as part of Hartford Health Care's system wide efforts to reduce costs." The hospital praised the program, but said that these are difficult financial times.

Raul Pino is the city's health director.

"We've been notified by Hartford Hospital that they are cutting the $105,000 that is their portion of the program," he said.  "This will represent 120 mothers."

Pino said the program costs $420,000 a year to operate -- half paid by the city, and half paid by the hospitals. Last year, St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center threatened to pull its funding, but it eventually changed course.

In a statement, Hartford Hospital confirmed that it's ending the funding. But it said it is still offering services to to women in the program at a hospital clinic. But Pino, the health director, said that getting rid of the home visit component for new mothers and their babies could reduce positive outcomes.