"The Ronan Report" provides insight about the activities at the Western Maryland Health System in Cumberland, Maryland, and about the changes taking place in healthcare today from a CEO's perspective.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Making Money From Surgical Errors (Really?)

Last week, there was an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association based on a study that hospitals are benefiting by earning money due to surgical complications.  The article and its subsequent editorial by a renowned health care economist were also carried by the New York Times. Well, for the record, not in Maryland and not at WMHS.  In Maryland, now in place for several years, we have been penalized for potentially preventable complications or PPCs, certainly not rewarded.  We apply such reporting to all payors.  In addition, as a TPR hospital, such an approach would be contrary to our two- year-old new payment methodology.  Apparently, government payors through Medicare and Medicaid are extremely conscientious while private payors aren't as restrictive.  The bottom line is that I can't believe that in 2013 with all of the scrutiny of the health care industry that benefitting from surgical or medical errors is occurring.  It's time for everyone to wake up and reverse this perverse payment system.

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