Citing potentially negative consequences for New Jersey's economy, the state's top employers, business groups and healthcare associations have formed an alliance to try to persuade Congress not to include price controls in any healthcare reform legislation it passes. The Alliance for a Healthy New Jersey includes groups such as the New Jersey Hospital Association, the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce, the Medical Society of New Jersey, major insurers and pharmaceutical companies. The alliance contends that price controls will result in the loss of 350,000 healthcare industry jobs as healthcare companies are forced to reduce staffing to compete. Jobs in New Jersey's health services and pharmaceutical industries account for $11 billion of the state's economy.
man convicted of shooting three physicians in one of the busiest hospital emergency rooms in the country has been sentenced to three life sentences plus 12 years. Superior Court Judge John H. Reid in Los Angeles last week ordered Damascio Ybarra Torres, 41, to serve two of the life sentences back-to-back. Last month, a jury found Mr. Torres plotted the shooting rampage at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center in 1993, then held two hospital workers hostage in a five-hour standoff with police. Mr. Torres was convicted of attempted murder and false imprisonment.-Associated Press
California Gov. Pete Wilson has approved the state's first 24-hour healthcare pilot project, under which the same provider will care for employees' work-related and non-occupational injuries and illnesses. In the three-year pilot, Kaiser Permanente of San Diego will provide all healthcare coverage for employees of San Diego County and the San Diego Community College District. Three private businesses are expected to join the project, which would cover more than 20,000 workers. So far, California and Oregon are the only two states to launch pilot projects that merge workers' compensation and group health coverage.
Despite worries about the impact of the healthcare reform debate, donations to health-related organizations increased 5.72% to $10.83 billion in 1993, a new survey has found. The inflation-adjusted increase in health contributions was 1.76%, according to this year's report by the AAFRC Trust for Philanthropy in New York. Donations to not-for-profit charities of all types reached an estimated $126.22 billion, up 3.55%, or -0.33% after inflation. The trust is the research arm of the American Association of Fund-Raising Counsel, a New York-based association that represents fund-raising counseling firms. The trust will publish its findings in Giving USA 1994, available in August.
The Department of Veterans Affairs has named Robert Perreault to head its healthcare reform efforts. The spot has been vacant since Elwood Headley, M.D., left to become chief of staff at the VA's hospital in Jamaica Plain, Mass. Mr. Perreault comes from the VA Medical Center in Philadelphia, where he has been the director for nearly a year. Prior to that, he ran the VA hospital in Newington, Conn.
Atlanta-based Medaphis Corp. said it has acquired the outstanding capital stock of Northwest Creditors Service, a privately held billing and accounts receivable management company, for $6.6 million. According to Medaphis, Northwest Creditors serves hospitals and physicians in Northern California and had revenues of $6 million for the year ended March 31.
James Sweeney, former chairman and chief executive officer of McGaw and new head of Coram Healthcare Corp., filed a $20 million lawsuit against Ivax Corp. and its chairman and CEO Phillip Frost last week. The suit accuses Ivax and Mr. Frost of engaging in securities fraud and misrepresenting Ivax's financial and operating condition in relation to its $600 acquisition of McGaw, the Irvine, Calif.-based hospital intravenous supply company in March. Ivax executives couldn't be reached for comment.