Non-Profit Hospitals Profit From Tax-Exempt Status

Approximately 60% of community hospitals are nonprofit hospitals.[1] A nonprofit hospital is a hospital that is granted 501(c)(3) status by the IRS. Nonprofit hospitals benefit from this status by being: Exempt from federal, state and local taxes; Permitted to receive charitable donations; and Allowed to issue tax-exempt bonds. To qualify for 501(c)(3) status, a hospital … Continued

The Fate of the ACA Remains Uncertain

On December 18, 2019, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals entered its decision in State of Texas, et al. v. United States of America, Case No. 19-10011, which was on appeal from the District Court for the Northern District of Texas. As framed by the 5th Circuit, the narrow questions before the Court were whether: … Continued

Will Federal Surprise Billing Legislation Ever Move Forward?

As 2019 draws to a close, and despite a flurry of activity throughout the year, the House and Senate have been unable to reach agreement with respect to balance billing. Members of the House and Senate introduced a myriad of bills all targeting “surprise medical billing.” They held hearings and negotiations. They spoke repeatedly about … Continued

Health Care Costs Continue to Grow

One thing is certain as we head into 2020, health care costs continue to rise. Here are some of the key statistics reported in 2019: $3.8 trillion is the predicted health care spend in 2019[1] 4.8% is the predicted increase in health care spend in 2019[2] 5.7% is the average rate national health spending is … Continued

An Accident of History

A fascinating article entitled, “The employer-health insurance connection an ‘accident of history’” by David Balat appeared in the November 9, 2019 edition of The Hill. The article briefly traces the history of healthcare in the United States and how it evolved into an employer-sponsored benefit. “Most early prepaid medical care programs in this country began … Continued

The Cost of Inpatient Care

Kaiser State Health Facts has issued a report of 2017 adjusted expenses per inpatient day for all 50 states.[1] “These figures, which are based on information from the 2017 American Hospital Association Annual Survey, include all operating and nonoperating expenses for registered U.S. community hospitals, defined as public, nonfederal, short-term general and other hospitals. The … Continued

2018 Medical Loss Rebates

The Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) requires health insurance companies to disclose how much they spend on health care and how much they spend on administrative costs, such as salaries and marketing. If an insurance company spends less than 80% (85% in the large group market) of premiums on medical care and efforts to improve the … Continued

Fate of the ACA

In February 2018, 20 Republican state attorney generals and governors filed suit to have the ACA declared unconstitutional in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas in a case captioned, Texas, et al. v. United States of America, et al., 4:18-cv-00167. The plaintiffs were successful and the case is now on appeal … Continued

Is the Legislative Focus on Surprise Billing Misplaced?

In a September 3, 2019 article in Health Affairs, Michael E. Chernew, Maximillian J. Pany, and Richard G. Frank make the argument for market-based price caps to address soaring health costs. “The gap between prices in the US and other countries, the large price-cost margins in the commercial sector, and the wide variation in prices … Continued

KFF Annual Employer Health Benefits Survey

Today the Kaiser Family Foundation released its annual Employer Health Benefits Survey. The annual survey of employers “provides a detailed look at trends in employer-sponsored health coverage, including premiums, employee contributions, cost-sharing provisions, offer rates, wellness programs, and employer practices. The 2019 survey included 2,012 interviews with nonfederal public and private firms.” Here are just … Continued