FourFourSeconds ago, Texas Health and Human Services announced that it would close its five Texas health care facilities as part of its plan to slash the number of doctors and nurses at the agency’s four hospitals and to slash its staffing at two other facilities.
The state said that closing facilities would result in the loss of nearly 11,000 full-time state employees, nearly 3,000 in the health care field and nearly 1,500 in the workforce as a whole.
“Texas is facing a crisis of the unprecedented proportions and this closure will affect all Texas citizens and will be a devastating blow to the economy, health care and quality of life for Texans,” Texas Secretary of State Carlos Gimenez said in a statement.
On Wednesday, the Texas Legislature passed a bill to cut the number in half at the state health care agency, which is currently dealing with a backlog of nearly 5,000 cases of Legionnaires’ disease, coronavirus and other coronaviruses.
The bill, SB6, which passed the Senate on Wednesday, also would cut the agency from having to hire more health care workers by half, to 2,200 by 2022.
Greg Abbott, a Republican, has long touted the state’s health care as a cornerstone of his economic agenda, arguing that the agency has been underfunded for years and has missed a $10 billion budget shortfall.
He has also promised to cut state workers by 25 percent.
But some critics, including Gov.
Greg Abbot, have argued that the cutbacks are necessary in light of the state running a budget shortfall of $10.6 billion.
In a news conference on Wednesday evening, the agency said that the cuts were part of a plan to close four of its six facilities.
One of the closures would be in Corpus Christi, home of the University of Texas, which has been the scene of several deadly epidemics.
In an earlier news conference, the governor called the cuts “outrageous.”
“I can’t believe this was the result of a whim or whim of a few legislators in Austin,” he said.
“It’s a terrible waste of taxpayer dollars and it’s a serious waste of human life.”
On Friday, the Senate approved a bill that would allow the state to extend the opening of the other three health care agencies to provide more funding for those services.
That would mean the closures wouldn’t happen until 2023.
While the governor has long argued that Texans should get more health coverage, there is growing criticism that his actions have led to higher costs for Texans.
The state has been struggling to fill the health service’s staffing vacancies for years, with health care providers having to lay off staff at hospitals, clinics and other locations, as well as reduce the number and quality in their clinics.
In a statement, Abbott said that he believes that his decision was made in good faith and that the shutdown is the right thing to do.
“Texas has one of the highest cost of health care in the nation, and it has taken years for the health services to catch up to the cost of living,” Abbott said.
Abbott’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Friday.