non-profit hospitals

Oregon Establishes Community Benefit Levels for Hospitals

Individual hospitals will need to meet specific community benefit requirements to retain their non-profit status under a new program in the state of Oregon. As described in a news release from the Oregon Health Authority and Department of Human Services, Each tax-exempt hospital or hospital system in the state will receive a floor for community benefit spending based on their revenues, prior expenditures, financial health, and the needs of the population served.  As part of the program, The bill created new standards for financial assistance to patients including increasing the income thresholds for charity care, limited medical debt collection and [...]

2021-02-11T06:00:11+00:00February 11, 2021|hospitals|

Financial Outlook Weak as Non-Profit Hospitals Face Challenging 2021

Non-profit hospitals face numerous challenges to their financial health in 2021, according to a recent analysis by Moody’s, the bond-rating company. Among those challenges are weak cash flow caused by reduced non-urgent procedures; weak demand; a shift of patients to lower-cost, lower-revenue outpatient settings; changes in payer mix as Medicaid enrollment continues to rise and more patients lose their health insurance; and COVID-19-related expenses that continue to drive up costs. Learn more about Moody’s outlook for non-profit hospitals in 2021 in the Fierce Healthcare article “Moody’s:  Not-for-profit hospitals face major cash constraints, negative outlook for 2021.”

2020-12-16T06:00:46+00:00December 16, 2020|hospitals|

GAO Calls for More Work Scrutinizing Hospitals’ Tax-Exempt Status

The question of whether non-profit hospitals are doing enough to justify their tax-exempt status is the focus of a new Government Accountability Office study on the manner in which the Internal Revenue Service evaluates hospitals’ tax exemption. According to the study, the IRS struggles with one of the three primary criteria for non-profit hospitals’ tax-exempt status outlined in the Affordable Care Act (PPACA):  whether the community benefit such hospitals provide justifies their tax exemption. The GAO review observed that While PPACA established requirements to better ensure hospitals are serving their communities, the law is unclear about what community benefit activities [...]

2020-10-23T06:00:31+00:00October 23, 2020|hospitals|

Prospects Mixed for Non-Profit Hospitals in 2019

There’s good news and bad news for non-profit hospitals in 2019, according to Fitch Ratings, the bond-rating company. The good news: For many, major IT investments have been completed. Many have adjusted to the reality of falling inpatient volume. Many that saw reduced margins as a result of launching, purchasing, or participating in provider-sponsored plans to compete in health exchanges have scaled back those efforts. The bad:  profits and margins may continue to decline – but those declines will not be as steep as they have been in recent years.  Reimbursement may be weaker, too. Learn more from the Fierce [...]

2019-04-01T10:17:11+00:00April 1, 2019|hospitals|

Grassley, Senate Finance to Resume Probe of Non-Profit Hospitals

The Senate Finance Committee will launch a review of non-profit hospitals and whether they are meeting the formal community benefit standards required to justify their tax-free status. This subject has long been of interest to committee chairman Chuck Grassley, who has returned as committee chair.  He pursued the same question of the hospitals’ non-profit status and community benefit  provide while leading the Senate Finance Committee from 2003 to 2007 and also as a member of the committee, although not its chair, in recent years. In a letter to the commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service, which is responsible for reviewing [...]

2019-03-01T06:00:44+00:00March 1, 2019|hospitals|

A New Community Benefit: Free Medical School

A health system has decided on a new approach to the community benefit spending that is required to enable it to retain its non-profit status:  free medical school. Kaiser Permanente, the non-profit California-based health system that will launch a new medical school in 2020, has announced that it will waive tuition for students in its first five graduating classes and include the lost revenue associated with free tuition in its community benefit spending. Company officials also hope the freedom from the debt associated with medical school loans will encourage students to pursue careers in family medicine and lower-paying specialties. Learn [...]

2019-02-22T06:00:25+00:00February 22, 2019|hospitals|

S&P: Stable 2019 for Non-Profit Hospitals

Non-profit hospitals should experience a relatively stable 2019, according to S&P Global Financial. The bond-rating company estimates that 81 percent of such hospitals will be stable this year, with roughly equal numbers of hospitals looking at upgrades and downgrades. This stability is being driven by strong balance sheets and diversification while challenges to hospital financial performance and stability include the possibility of a recession, rising costs for serving an aging population, changes in Medicaid eligibility and payment policies, and the continued emergence of non-traditional health care providers. S&P also concludes that hospital operating margins are recovering after years of investment [...]

2019-01-22T06:00:30+00:00January 22, 2019|hospitals|

State Court Upholds Non-Profit Hospital Tax Exemption

The Illinois Supreme Court has ruled in favor of non-profit hospitals in response to a challenge to their exemption from local property taxes. Upholding a 2016 lower court ruling, the state Supreme Court affirmed that non-profit hospitals’ charitable expenditures can be used to offset their local property tax liabilities. Learn more about the court’s decision in this article in Crain’s Chicago Business.

2018-09-28T06:00:35+00:00September 28, 2018|hospitals|

Uninsured Rise Could Hurt Non-Profit Hospitals

The recent growth in the number of uninsured Americans could be especially harmful to non-profit hospitals and health systems, according to S&P Global Ratings. As reported by Healthcare Dive, S&P believes that because non-profit hospitals serve larger proportions of uninsured patients, they are more vulnerable to increases in the number of uninsured people.  Healthcare Dive also notes that In particular, S&P warns of a credit negative for nonprofits as patients who started in a care plan with health insurance seek to continue treatment without it.  Many hospitals already are struggling as volumes and reimbursement decline and more care shifts to [...]

2018-06-22T06:00:43+00:00June 22, 2018|hospitals|

Helping Safety-Net Hospitals Help Their Patients

A new report published on the Health Affairs Blog describes the continuing challenges safety-net hospitals face and offers suggestions for helping them meet those challenges. The challenges, according to the report, are the virtual elimination of the Affordable Care Act’s individual health insurance mandate; the continued decline in the amount of Medicare disproportionate share hospital money (Medicare DSH) provided to safety-net hospitals; and hospital closures that shift more of the burden for caring for uninsured patients onto a smaller pool of safety-net hospitals.  The result is under-served patients and new financial risks for the hospitals that remain after some safety-net [...]

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