Monday, May 26, 2014

Hospitals Cutting Back on Charity Care Because of PPACA

Charitable hospitals that treat uninsured Americans are a threat to Obamacare exchanges because they represent an avenue for treatment outside of government mandated care.  We began covering this  topic in June, 2013 here and in August here

This is from the New York Times

[Obamacare] reduces federal aid to hospitals that treat large numbers of poor and uninsured people, creating an additional pressure on some to restrict charity care.

In St. Louis, Barnes-Jewish Hospital has started charging co-payments to uninsured patients, no matter how poor they are. The Southern New Hampshire Medical Center in Nashua no longer provides free care for most uninsured patients who are above the federal poverty line — $11,670 for an individual. And in Burlington, Vt., Fletcher Allen Health Care has reduced financial aid for uninsured patients who earn between twice and four times the poverty level.

By tightening requirements for charity care, hospital executives say, they hope to encourage eligible people to obtain low-cost insurance through the subsidized private plans now available under the law. ...