Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Look Down the Road at Medicare Cuts

Moody’s Investor’s Report:

Doctor, your credit score will suffer. You will freeze plans for investing in capital assets, personnel, EMRs, and new equipment leases.

There will be multiple and extended domino effects triggered by health insurance reform. I do not believe anyone should call the APPA health care reform.  It is clearly not so.

Medicare pays more than $300 billion to providers annually, covering the care of more than 40 million Americans. About 70% of corporate health providers rely on Medicare and Medicaid for more than one-third of their revenue.

Certain industries stand to face the sharpest cuts in government money, Moody’s says, namely home health, as well as oxygen and durable equipment companies. Hospice care, nursing homes and specialty hospitals are also expected to lose millions off what they receive now. Moody’s says we can expect consolidation in health industries, as providers acquire different health-care entities to diversify.

The entities less likely to face severe trims: inpatient hospitals, contrary to what hospital associations and most CEO’s complain about. Moody’s buttresses their point with a list of for-profit hospital entities that have been assigned stable outlooks. The report doesn’t measure what these cuts might mean for already struggling nonprofits.

  • What and Who They Won't Cut wrote:  commentary from the WSJ article.

Due to massive inflows of corporate cash into the offices of our Congress People the Following Hundreds of Billions of Dollars of Competition Killing Direct and Indirect Government Subsidies will Never Be Cut or Taken Away from the Insurance Companies….

1) Medicare Part D subsidies for insurance and drug companies.
2) Medicare Advantage subsidies for insurance companies.
3) A Federal ban on Medicare Insurance Bidding on a drug formulary through competitive bidding.
4) A federal exemption for private health insurance companies from antitrust regulations allowing them to collude against patients, doctors and hospitals.
5) A ban on Federal grants to develop a single EMR and billing system for physicians, hospitals and therapists which would reveal clinical, preventative and surgical outcomes. Outcome revelations would crush the health insurance companies, and allow for free-market competition among doctors and hospitals based on quality and efficiency.
6) Continued protection of private health insurance companies from medical malpractice lawsuits via federal ERISA laws.
7) Continued reckless and negligent medical rationing by private health insurance companies via their non-physician employees.
8) A continued government ban on collective bargaining by physicians.
9) An inability of Medicare to enlarge its limited risk pool beyond that of the most expensive oldest, sickest and most physically disabled citizens of our nation thereby insuring the bankruptcy of our most effective and least rationed health insurance product for the elderly.
10) A continued allowance of 1.25 million personal bankruptcies due to a medical illness.
11) Continued real change in malpractice reform. Real malpractice reform would allow internists and family practitioners to fulfill their role as primary care physicians efficiently and productively, tackling dynamic illnesses without prematurely referring their sicker patients to expensive specialists without medical benefit.

So what, in typical corrupt government fashion, the higher powers of our bribed public officials have declared war on oxygen vendors, super specialty hospitals, home health, durable wheelchair and bed equipment companies, those who comfort the dying in hospice care, and those who care for the senile and feeble in nursing homes. Moody’s says we can expect consolidation in health industries this is to be expected…bigger insurance companies protected from collusion/anti trust laws, and ever shrinking quality of care due to health care rationing by insurance companies for bondholder and shareholder and executive benefits.

Shame Crying face

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