The Federal Reserve announced plans to buy $600 billion in longer-term Treasury securities, citing continued high unemployment, tight credit and slow economic recovery. The Federal Open Market Committee was near unanimous in support of the strategy to bolster a weak economy that continues to strain states' healthcare safety net and hamper access to medical care more than year after the recession ended.
Fed makes $600 billion move to boost economy
The nation's number of uninsured soared last year to an estimated 50.7 million as did the number of those living in poverty, the Census Bureau reported in September. Hospitals report weaker demand for medical care that suggests patients have delayed care for financial reasons and some healthcare employers have responded with layoffs of their own. Moody's Investors Services said last month that hospital admissions growth was “virtually non-existent” last year among its hospital portfolio and the trend is expected to continue “given the anemic economic recovery” and the shift toward outpatient care.
The Federal Reserve will buy roughly $75 billion in longer term treasuries per month through June 2011 under the proposal, but will review the pace and size of the program in order to adjust it as needed, the committee said in a press release. One of the 11 Federal Open Market Committee members voted against the plan.
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