Tuesday, June 22, 2010

PA hospital financial data shows their struggles

Today’s entry features a posting from one of referred blogs you’ll find on the right-hand column of this page.  The health care blog of Portfolio online business journal is called “Heavy Doses” and is written by Brett Chase.

Health care is sometimes referred to as a recession-proof industry, a fallacy that's refuted by just-released financial data for Pennsylvania hospitals.

Losses on investments combined with an uptick in the number of patients who don't pay their bills contributed to an $865 million drop in net income among the state's 167 general hospitals, a report shows.

The Pennsylvania survey is consistent with what hospitals around the country are seeing during this recession. Charity care cases are rising as more people lose their jobs and their insurance. Like the rest of us, hospitals are seeing lower returns or losses on investments.

The Pittsburgh Business Times has more:

Most of the $865 million drop in statewide net income was the result of a $764 million decline in non-operating income, revenue mostly from investments in stocks, bonds and other securities.

"Hospitals, much like other sectors of the economy, face mounting pressures," says Carol Scanlan, president and CEO of the Hospital & Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania, a Harrisburg-based trade group.

For example, one-third of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's 15 hospitals reported negative operating results for fiscal 2009.

To read the full article, click here.

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