FEMA awards $2.9M to Valley Hospital, Cape Regional Medical for COVID-19 staffing costs

Cape May Tech instructors Ann Zilinek and Barbara Juzaitis walking students through COVID injections of each other.

U.S. Sens. Bob Menendez and Cory Booker on Wednesday announced a combined total of $2,909,150 from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency for staffing costs incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic by Valley Hospital and Cape Regional Medical Center.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the threat to the health and safety of the general public and medical personnel required hospitals, clinics and medical centers across the state to implement emergency protective measures.

“The early days of the pandemic proved challenging for hospitals across the country as they dealt with an increase in patients, decrease in staff and limited resources,” Menendez (D-N.J.) said. “Our hospitals in New Jersey faced this challenge head on as they did everything they could to ensure their patients and staff remained protected during this uncertain and stressful time. This funding is critical for medical centers so that they don’t have to worry about making up the costs used to keep their doctors, nurses and administrative staff as well as their patients safe.”

“As we continue to emerge from the public health crisis, I’m committed to bringing home resources so that our health care providers can continue providing quality care to all New Jerseyans,” Booker (D-N.J.) stated. “This award will ensure that our hospitals are well-equipped and have the resources necessary to protect our communities’ health and well-being.”

Valley Hospital, located in Ridgewood, was awarded a total of $1,196,033 to cover the cost of contracted emergency and in-patient clinical care services to minimize staffing level shortages. Cape Regional Medical Center, located in Middle Township, Ocean County, was awarded $1,713,117 for necessary increases in staffing, the temporary hiring of highly trained medical personnel as well as the testing, treating and diagnosing of patients with COVID-19.

In September, Menendez and Booker, alongside U.S. Rep. Donald Norcross (D-1st Dist.), announced $32.3 million in FEMA funding to support Cooper University Hospital in covering its costs during the COVID-19 pandemic, when it hired nearly 400 nurses to handle the influx of patients coming through the hospital.

In October, Menendez and Booker announced $13 million from FEMA to reimburse Valley Hospital and the New Jersey Department of Health to cover costs incurred during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In November, Menendez and Booker announced $126 million in FEMA funding to provide reimbursement for COVID-19 related expenses to public agencies and several hospitals across the state.