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How Hospitals Got Richer Off Obamacare

Jan 2019

According to Politico, one of the biggest impacts of Obamacare is the rise in tax-exempt not-for-profit hospitals’ revenue and their concurrent reductions in charity care. High and unknown costs before service are standard procedure at most hospitals, so employers need to fend for themselves. Medxoom’s modern marketplace technologies help employers and their employees shine a light on local hospital care quality and costs so they can try to get the best outcome at the best price.

From Politico:

“A decade after the nation’s top hospitals used all their advertising and lobbying clout to keep their tax-exempt status, pointing to their vast givebacks to their communities, they have seen their revenue soar while cutting back on the very givebacks they were touting, according to a POLITICO analysis.”

The result, POLITICO’s investigation shows, is that the nation’s top seven hospitals as ranked by U.S. News & World Report collected more than $33.9 billion in total operating revenue in 2015, the last year for which data was available, up from $29.4 billion in 2013, before the ACA took full effect, according to their own financial statements and state reports. But their spending on direct charity care — the free treatment for low-income patients — dwindled from $414 million in 2013 to $272 million in 2015.

To put that another way: The top seven hospitals’ combined revenue went up by $4.5 billion per year after the ACA’s coverage expansions kicked in, a 15 percent jump in two years. Meanwhile, their charity care — already less than 2 percent of revenue — fell by almost $150 million per year, a 35 percent plunge over the same period.

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