Community Benefit

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 imposes new requirements for tax-exempt hospitals to maintain levels of community benefit-related care. These hospitals must conduct assessments of the level of need for healthcare in their communities, notify patients of financial assistance policies available to them, and restrict charges to uninsured, indigent patients to the same levels charged to insured patients. A 2009 Health Affairs study notes nonprofit hospitals in Maryland, which make up virtually all hospitals in the state, spent more than $800 million on community benefit actions to maintain tax-exempt status in 2007.

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Hospitals in states that have expanded Medicaid eligibility under the Affordable Care Act are already bringing in fewer self-pay and charity care patient cases, according to an analysis by the Colorado Hospital Association.
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Post date: June 5, 2014
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Hospitals in Georgia have struggled financially in recent years, as uncompensated care costs rose after the recession and the state rejected Medicaid expansion. But one standalone facility decided that affiliation and clinical integration might be the right path to stave off closure.
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Post date: June 3, 2014
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One of the biggest beneficiaries of healthcare reform's expansion of insurance coverage to more than 13 million people this year has been the nation's safety-net hospitals. At least in the states that have chosen to accept the Medicaid expansion.
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Post date: May 27, 2014
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Almost a third of all hospitalizations now treat diabetic patients, and cost more than average. Diabetic admissions may be a problem that regulators, ACOs and providers need to solve for the long-term.
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Post date: May 16, 2014
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With new reporting requirements from the Affordable Care Act and increasing scrutiny of community benefits programs, executives of hospitals are taking a more critical look at their programs to make sure they're on target and creating a solid financial strategy.
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Post date: April 21, 2014
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Engagement is a big buzzword in healthcare these days. Every program seeks to achieve it; every provider wants to enhance it. But what is engagement exactly?
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Post date: April 10, 2014
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Engagement is a big buzzword in healthcare these days. Every program seeks to achieve it; every provider wants to enhance it. But what is engagement exactly?
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Post date: April 10, 2014
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All but five states received a failing grade this year on the way they provide healthcare price transparency, according to a report by Catalyst for Payment Reform and the Health Care Incentives Improvement Institute.
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Post date: March 27, 2014
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Medicare's Trust Fund has a 12 years of solvency left and seniors are also being forced to pay more, making it a ripe time to reform today's haphazard payment system, argues Medicare's independent advisor.
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Post date: March 19, 2014
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Since 2008 when CMS first implemented the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems survey for U.S. hospitals, the scores from these surveys have become increasingly more important to hospital executives as a measure of quality. They are now used to determine 30 percent of the total incentive under the Hospital Value Based Purchasing program.
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Post date: February 28, 2014
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Last month, Paul R. Bengston, CEO of Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital, a small, critical access hospital located in St. Johnsbury, Vt., was chosen to lead the American Hospital Association's Section for Small or Rural Hospitals in 2014. The 21-person governing council represents small or rural hospitals in the AHA's policy process and member services initiatives.
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Post date: February 27, 2014
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Since the recession first began in 2008, hospitals and health systems have continually seen a drop in inpatient volumes. Most industry experts say they expect more of the same for the rest of 2014 and even the next five years or so.
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Post date: February 24, 2014
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Last week the President waded directly into the national debate over "ObamaCare" by calling a big media event in the East Room of the White House to talk about the $100 rebates a small percentage of potentially eligible people are getting under the new health law.
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Post date: July 23, 2013
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The head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, Marilyn Tavenner, is out with a "Myths vs. Fact" clarification memo regarding the waiver of the employer mandate and whether the new health insurance exchanges will verify people's incomes when calculating subsidies.
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Post date: July 15, 2013
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DealWell, a new company that offers online health care deals, is the subject of a story on KERA, the NPR station in Dallas. I'm quoted in the audio and text versions.
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Post date: July 10, 2013
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As hospitals and health clinics are striving to make their facilities more accessible, more personable, and more efficient, one health system is doing just that by taking a large source of stress out of the equation - the waiting room.
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Post date: June 27, 2013
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A couple of recent wellness-related headlines caught my eye.
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Post date: June 4, 2013
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I'd like to read the articles in JAMA Internal Medicine about shared decision making, but am too cheap to pay for access. So I'll rely on the LA Times article on the topic to make a brief comment.
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Post date: May 28, 2013
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Conventional wisdom is that cutting Medicare rates shifts the burden to the private sector, but an intriguing article in Health Affairs reaches a counterintuitive conclusion.
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Post date: May 9, 2013
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By a majority decision of 76%, a nine year renewal of a local property tax ensuring access to healthcare for the uninsured or underinsured was passed.
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Post date: April 15, 2013
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I think everyone believes that Texas Governor Rick Perry is sincere in his opposition to the Affordable Care Act (ACA aka ObamaCare). But this still doesn’t explain why he’s refusing the expansion of Medicaid that the law brings.
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Post date: April 4, 2013
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On January 8, 2013, the Obama Administration published its latest semiannual regulatory agenda, outlining planned regulatory initiatives in a number of policy areas.
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Post date: January 17, 2013
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On January 2, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published a notice of proposed rulemaking and notice of public hearing regarding implementation of an ACA “shared responsibility” provision.
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Post date: January 10, 2013
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Phil Kalin, CEO of Colorado’s Center for Improving Value in Health Care (CIVHC) has been out in the community talking about Obamacare.
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Post date: December 10, 2012
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