Saturday, December 5, 2009

Grey Lady Down

The old Gray Lady closed it doors. It was the big charitiy hospital downtown that took care of many of the indigent and government payors. It just couldn't support itself. Its overhead kept increasing and it lost more and more of its private pay patients. I know that many would argue that this is a sign of the times but I am afraid that it is more than that. Hospitals lose money on the self insured, lose a bit less on the Medicaid and lose a bit on Medicare. They make the money to offset these losses with the private insurance. To give you an idea, if we use the Medicare reimbursement as the basis, you lose about 5% if you just have every patient in the hospital having Medicare. Medicaid pays 60% of Medicare, so you lose about 45% of cost with Medicaid. Self pay, you are lucky to collect 5%. Now these are not charges, this is the actual cost of doing business. Depending on how well you negotiated your contracts, BlueCross might pay about 115% of Medicare. So, to make it you need as many private pay patients as possible to offset the losses.

Now here is the kicker. The present debate in Congress is to have a public option that is basically an expansion of Medicaid, which again pays at a rate that causes the hospital to lose 45%. The pateints who would get this public option are those that would have otherwise had a private insurace. So, the long and short of it is the hospitals are going to fall just like the Old Gray Lady. Our other hospitals are at 90 to 100% occupancy. They have to be just to meet expenses.

The Gray Lady took care of those who were in most need, too bad no one bothered to take care of her.


SeaSpray said...

It's concerning and discouraging. Certainly could cause a domino effect.

I just don't understand why the officials trying to pass these bills don't understand or see the long term effects. It is so obvious!

In the end ..the very people they say they are trying to help ..they hurt and a whole lot more of the population.

I have never felt so strongly in my adult life ..but I really hate that this administration is in control. I hope we make it through.

I was listening to a conversation between Beck and O'Reilly last night and they were discussing what direction this country was going in ..the end as we know it ..*the end of America as we know it* or as Beck said restoration.

beck thinks we're at a crossroads.

I just never would've thought I would ever be worried about the United States not being a world power, example of free enterprise, and all the good things she stands for. And certainly wouldn't have thought this country would be destroyed from within. I like Beck's word ..restoration.

It seems that some of those normally politically opposed are joining forces because they do not like what they are seeing with this Chicago minded,inexperienced administration.

the people do not want this healthcare and they are NOT listening. They want it pushed through for the win.

And last thing..the cap and trade. All this taxing! It's all too much. There HAS to be balance.

I don't want to see the private insurances destroyed either.. and they will be if they pass this plan.

One of our local hospital no longer accepts BC/BS except for emergency. I assumed it was for poor provider reimbursement.

SeaSpray said...

Throckmorton .. I REALLY think you will appreciate this. :)

SeaSpray said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PlanetaryGear said...

step 1: bankrupt the industry you'd like to control.
step 2: buy out the entire infrastructure at a discount and put your own people in control.

I thought this was obvious? given everything else these people have done.