HealthLeaders Media Finance - May 18, 2009 | Looming Reform Kills Mood for Healthcare Deals View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
Looming Reform Kills Mood for Healthcare Deals
Michelle Ponte, Senior Editor-Finance

While healthcare lending and deal making is down due to the economy, it seems that growing talk of healthcare reform is making the market even more skittish, say a group of healthcare lenders and investors. When the air clears, there will be some clear winners and losers. [Read More]
  May 18, 2009

Editor's Picks
10 Lessons From the RAC Demonstration Program
The Medicare RAC demonstration program has ended and providers can learn many lessons as the permanent program is rolled out. One provider in California learned the importance of tracking and monitoring all correspondence to and from the RAC. For a hospital in New York, the most important way to survive a RAC audit is by tracking appeals. With all of this so new, case studies from the demonstration program can serve as powerful tools in preparing for RACs. [Read More]
Report warns of Medicare collapse
Healthcare experts have warned in the past that the Medicare Hospital Insurance Trust Fund's reserves will be empty by 2019 unless a major overhaul occurs. Well, the warning bells just got infinitely louder. The Social Security and Medicare Boards of Trustees annual report warns now that the hospital fund coffers will dry up 2017. Social Security is also in big trouble. The report says that the government will not be able to pay full benefits by 2037. That estimate is four years sooner than what was predicted only a year ago. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner says that while the Administration will work to keep Social Security solvent, healthcare reform is the first order of the day. [Read More]
Should Charitable Care Tax Breaks Be Part of Healthcare Reform?
Hospitals' tax-exempt status, yet again, is being challenged by Washington. This time legislators are questioning whether hospitals should continue to get tax breaks for charity care if there is a move to universal healthcare coverage. Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA), ranking minority member of the Senate Finance Committee, which met recently to discuss healthcare reform, suggested that a move to universal care would result in a drop in uncompensated care. [Read More]
Hospitals begin to move into supermarkets
Physicians may scoff and say walk-in retail clinics provide substandard care, but some hospitals see them as a way to bring in more cash during tough times. Twenty-five hospitals are starting to affiliate with the likes of Wal-Mart. Moreover, big name providers such as the Mayo Clinic and the Cleveland Clinic are partnering with local supermarkets and shopping centers to bring their care to the masses. What's not to like? It's a business model that brings in more patients and expands a hospital's geographic reach. [Read More]
Editor's Note
Due to the Memorial Day holiday Monday, HealthLeaders Media Finance will publish Wednesday, May 27.
Finance Forum
Shrinking Margins, Shrinking Options?
Margins at U.S. hospitals are declining while the recession hits full force. In this environment it may seem impossible to balance your priorities and finances. However, there are relatively pain-free ways to trim costs, say hospital experts, before you ever get to the high-pain points such as having to lay off staff. [Read More]
Finance Headlines
Nashville hospital sued for $5 million over handling of child's corpse
Nashville Post - May 14, 2009
AHIP: Health Savings Account Enrollment Reaches 8 Million
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media - May 13, 2009
Illinois-based Loyola University Health System to cut 440 jobs
Chicago Tribune - May 14, 2009
Health groups vow cost control
Washington Post - May 11, 2009
Medicare Going Broke More Quickly
Lead Time - May 12, 2009
Baptist Health grows into Broward County, FL
Miami Herald - May 11, 2009
A Cookie for Cost-Cutting
Philip Betbeze, for HealthLeaders Media - May 8, 2009
From HealthLeaders Magazine
Cash for Computers
HealthLeaders May 2009 With an 11-figure incentive to invest in information technology and electronic medical records, healthcare executives need to determine if this offer from Uncle Sam is the kind of help that they are prepared to accept. [Read More]
Service Line Management
Simpler Surgeries, Complex Market
Technological advances have impact beyond the OR, affecting market trends and hospital-physician alignment. [Read More]
Money Talk

HealthEast Care System, St. Paul, MN
Rating: BB+; BB
Outlook: Stable
Affected Debt: $300 million
Agency: Moody's Investors Service
Remarks: Outlook revised from positive because of modest operating stress on current-year financial operations. [Read More]
Audio Feature

Hospital-Physician Alignment: What You Need to Know Today: Is your organization considering some type of alignment arrangement with physicians? Then listen in to Deane Corliss, vice-chair of the Health Care Practice Group at Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP in Birmingham, AL. Corliss says alignments are increasing in multiple areas from clinical co-management agreements to syndication of acute care hospitals. In our interview, she discusses what's driving hospitals and physicians together today and offers sound advice before you pony up the legal fees. [Listen Now]

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