HealthLeaders Media Finance - July 6, 2010 | Is It Time For A Chargemaster Check-Up? View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
Is It Time For A Chargemaster Check-Up?
Karen Minich-Pourshadi, Senior Editor-Finance

Financial leaders are charged with being aware of more than where every penny goes -- they must also be keenly aware of how their billing activities leave them open to compliance scrutiny. Sometimes that means taking a magnifying glass to areas like the chargemaster to see if the hospital is slipping off track. [Read More]
  July 6, 2010

Editor's Picks
Hospitals Help Pay For Doc Fix While Pharma Gets A Pass
President Obama stands ready to sign a bill that will postpone the controversial 21% cut in physician reimbursement from Medicare. Included in the bill is a provision that would cause hospitals to at least partially fund the "doc fix," as it's become known. Those cuts are determined by the sustainable growth rate formula which is intended to keep Medicare cost growth at par with inflation. With so many "fixes" to the SGR over so many years, the annual cuts have risen to ridiculous amounts. [Read More]
Is Health Insurance Moving Toward Oligopoly?
Michael Kleinman, vice president for investor relations at WellPoint, Inc., put a label on the insurance industry consolidation recently that has been underway for years. The market is becoming an 'oligopoly', dominated by just a few companies, and healthcare reform may accelerate the process, he was quoted as saying in a Businessweek article. But is that really the case? [Read More]
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Finance Headlines
Emergency room visits grow in Mass.
Boston Globe July 4, 2010
Health overhaul may mean longer ER waits, crowding
Associated Press July 2, 2010
Health-Care Reform and the Boom in Nurses' Strikes
Newsweek July 2, 2010
Health Insurance Expenses Skyrocket under Obama Care
Business News July 2, 2010
Health-Care Stocks Decline On Pricing, Macroeconomic Worries
Wall Street Journal July 1, 2010
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Money Talk

A look at one hospital's struggles to improve

Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
Rating: AA-
Outlook: Positive
Affected Debt: $1.7 billion
Agency: Standard & Poor's Ratings Services
Remarks: S&P revised its rating outlook to positive from stable and affirmed its AA- rating on various issuers' debt issued for Mayo Clinic. At the same time, S&P affirmed its various other ratings on numerous bonds issued on behalf of Mayo Clinic. Offsetting credit factors include liquidity levels that are still below similarly rated organizations. S&P also considers Mayo Clinic's asset allocation aggressive, with approximately 50% of Mayo's long-term fund in alternative assets. S&P also cites its potential exposure to future Medicare and Medicare physician reimbursement reductions.
[Read More]
Audio Feature

Create Extra Capacity, Without Extra Expense: Wayne Keathley, president of New York's Mt. Sinai Medical Center, discusses adding 10,000 patient discharges per year by working on accountability and efficiency in patient throughput. [Listen Now]
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