tci Medicare Compliance & Reimbursement - 2005 Issue 31

HOSPITALS: Cuts Cut Both Ways, Hurt Hospitals And Private Payers

Low Medicare, Medicaid payments force hospitals to overcharge commercial plans.Health plans having a hard time controlling rising costs are getting no help from the government.A new report commissioned by Blue Shield of California and conducted by actuaries at Milliman Inc. shows that hospitals are increasing the rates charged to commercial health plans in order to make up for the low rates they receive from Medicare and Medicaid. And with state and federal budgets tight, more cuts to the entitlement programs are expected - and that means more costs will be shifted onto health plans, employers and consumers...

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