Another Dark Side Of COVID: Are Hospitals Making A Profit?
HCA Healthcare finance chief Bill Rutherford says coronavirus patients tend to stay longer than typical hospitalized patients. Still, most hospitals appear to be losing money on COVID care, Modern Healthcare reports.
Are Hospitals Making Money Treating COVID-19 Patients?
On HCA Healthcare’s second-quarter investor call, an analyst asked the for-profit chain’s chief financial officer an intriguing question: What’s the profitability of COVID-19 patients? Posed to most other health systems, such a query would have sounded absurd. But the Nashville-based hospital giant had just posted $1.1 billion in profit, up 38% from the prior-year period, even as elective procedures were largely shut down. (Bannow, 9/12)
How Hospital Administrators Were Implicated In A Right-Wing COVID-19 Conspiracy
At a campaign stop in rural Waterloo, Iowa in late August, Republican Sen. Joni Ernst told a crowd of nearly 100 people that she believed healthcare providers were inflating COVID-19 death counts for profit. "These healthcare providers and others are reimbursed at a higher rate if COVID is tied to it, so what do you think they're doing?" she said, according to a report by the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier. Ernst is fighting to keep her seat in one of a handful of competitive races that will determine control of the Senate in November. (Cohrs, 9/11)
When Private Equity Firms Invest In Women's Health Clinics, Who Benefits?
As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to surge in the United States, Americans are becoming more aware of the deficits in their health care delivery system. Invisible to many, however, is the rapidly expanding role that private equity is playing in health care — especially for women. (Borsa, Bruch and Richardson, 9/14)
COVID-19 Chills Private Equity Investment In Healthcare
Private equity spending in healthcare in the second quarter of 2020 was roughly one-third its total in the prior-year period as the COVID-19 pandemic gives some investors pause, according to a new PitchBook report. U.S. private equity deals in the healthcare sector totaled $8.5 billion in the quarter ended June 30, compared with about $24.2 billion in the second quarter of 2019, per the new report from PitchBook, a Seattle-based data and research firm focused on private capital markets. (Bannow, 9/11)
Kaiser Health News:
With No Legal Guardrails For Patients, Ambulances Drive Surprise Medical Billing
School librarian Amanda Brasfield bent over to grab her lunch from a small refrigerator and felt her heart begin to race. Even after lying on her office floor and closing her eyes, her heart kept pounding and fluttering in her chest. The school nurse checked Brasfield’s pulse, found it too fast to count and called 911 for an ambulance. Soon after the May 2018 incident, Brasfield, now 39, got a $1,206 bill for the 4-mile ambulance ride across the northwestern Ohio city of Findlay — more than $300 a mile. And she was on the hook for $859 of it because the only emergency medical service in the city has no contract with the insurance plan she has through her government job. (Ungar, 9/14)