Chip Kahn, president and CEO of the Federation of American Hospitals: Job one in the next few weeks is to get a realistic package through Congress that can help us get over the hump here in terms of vaccines, in terms of testing, and in terms of extra money for the economy through the various avenues in the bill. Health
Wright Lassiter, president and CEO of Henry Ford Health System based in Detroit, Mich.: When you look at main street kinds of issues, hospitals in many environments are the largest employers. So when you think about a hospital that has significant financial challenges and you think through how do you weave a fabric in a community for strong economics, if that hospital has to lay off or close its doors, that has significant impacts for local communities.
Sharfstein: Just as it’s important to make sure that the institutions that are taking care of patients in vulnerable communities are supported, it’s also important to directly support those vulnerable communities.
Shalala: It will be very different under President Biden because right now the Republicans wait to see whether the smoke has come out of the White House.