Geisinger Announces It Will Not Hire Smokers
Also in hospital news, a Denver Hospital will pay $6.3 Million to settle overbilling allegations and officials at the University of Louisville Hospital look to Kentucky's governor for a financial plan.
The Philadelphia Inquirer: A central Pennsylvania Health System Says It Won't Hire Smokers
The vaunted Geisinger Health System in central Pennsylvania ushered in the new year by becoming the latest employer to resolve not to hire smokers. The shift toward policies that ban smokers, not just smoking, has been growing in Pennsylvania and the 20 other states that allow it. … Geisinger says its policy, effective next month, will reduce health care costs and decrease absenteeism among its 15,000 employees, while encouraging healthier living (McCullough, 1/11).
Modern Healthcare: Denver Hospital To Pay $6.3 Million Settlement
The operator of the Denver Health Medical Center has agreed to pay $6.3 million to settle allegations that the 404-bed public safety net hospital overbilled Medicare and Medicaid by manipulating patients' status at the hospital between 2006 and 2009. ... The Denver Health statement said the hospital had already turned up the issue in its own audits when the government officials broached it. But the settlement says that the system was not admitting liability in the case, and that the hospital was settling to avoid protracted litigation (Carlson, 1/10).
Modern Healthcare: University of Louisville Hospital Officials Want Merger Proposal From Governor
Frustrated University of Louisville Hospital officials said they are waiting for Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear to submit his own merger proposal that would "help secure the financial future" of their facility after the governor again rejected their three-way merger with Catholic Health Initiatives. Hospital officials said in a statement that the rejection would force them to consider cuts and hoped to "minimize their [effect] on our most vulnerable patients" (Selvam, 1/10).