Delegates speak out on budget proposal

Delegate Ballard and Delegate Obenshain’s Statement on the House Budget Proposal 

Budget includes funds to support labor and delivery services at hospitals

RICHMOND, VA – Delegate Jason Ballard (R-Giles) and Delegate Chris Obenshain (R-Montgomery) today released the following statement on the passing of the House Appropriations Committee’s budget proposal, which includes funding to support obstetric-gynecological services at hospitals impacted by workforce challenges.

“We were both disappointed to learn of Montgomery Regional Hospital’s recent decision to temporarily cease obstetrics services for patients in the New River Valley. Access to healthcare services is already a challenge for many families in Southwest Virginia. Once we learned of the workforce challenges that led to this unfortunate decision, we immediately went to work on trying to find potential solutions. After speaking with leaders at Montgomery Regional, we requested funds for additional graduate residency positions in obstetrics in the biennial budget. Our hope is that these additional residency slots will help facilitate the reopening of obstetric services at Montgomery Regional in the near future.”

“Those of us who live in rural areas know that maternal healthcare options in our communities have been in rapid decline. This is why I found it imperative to take immediate action through the Commonwealth’s budget to incentivize the recruitment of these essential healthcare providers. My request of $1 million dollars in the state budget to fund 10 new OB/GYN graduate medical residency slots is a direct response to our region’s declining maternal healthcare options, and its inclusion into the final budget agreement is vital to ensure our region’s mothers are not endangered by lack of local access to OB/GYN’s,” said Delegate Ballard.

“While I am disappointed that the Senate did not include Senator Hackworth’s budget amendment for this same purpose in their proposed budget, we will continue working to ensure this critical funding is included in the final version of the budget. I am grateful to Delegate Ballard for his partnership in working on this important issue facing families in Montgomery County and beyond. Access to care, particularly for women’s health and obstetric services, is vital to the workforce and quality of life in Southwest Virginia,” said Delegate Obenshain.