"Dumping" of elderly and medically indigent patients on public hospitals is reported more often than ever, as private hospitals try to keep their balance sheets healthy.
Due to the success of DRGs, inpatient utilization falls 10% compared with the previous year.
AIDS is placing a small but growing burden on resources in some urban hospitals. Most people with AIDS have health insurance, but the costs of treating such patients rises as high as $100,000, exceeding many people's insurance limits. Public hospitals are suffering the most, says Lonnie C. Edwards, Chicago's health commissioner.
Major medical clinics, including Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic, seek affiliations with similar groups to expand their base of primary-, secondary- and tertiary-care clinics.
Charles P. Ewell is named president of the new American Healthcare Systems, a purchasing alliance resulting from the merger of Associated Health System and United Healthcare System.
David M. Kinzer, president of Massachusetts Hospital System, said all-payer systems like Massachusetts' guarantee indigent care is funded.
HCFA will reform physician reimbursement in the next four years, just as it reformed hospital reimbursement, says HCFA Administrator Carolyne K. Davis.
An American College of Hospital Administrators study says the role of hospital chief executive officers will change dramatically as hospitals consolidate. CEOs will be less autonomous, but their importance will increase.
Advertising. Hospitals and HMOs, hoping to gain a competitive advantage and hang onto market share, have leaped into print, billboard and broadcast advertising. Ambulatory-care services are seen as big selling points.
Peer review organizations. Under Medicare reforms, PROs are formed across the country to contract with HCFA to provide utilization review to keep costs lower and quality high.
COVER STORY January 1984
HMOs predict they will have 50 million enrollees in 10 years, as consumers fret over soaring health insurance premiums.
Although most of the 280 HMOs are not-for-profit, 56 are owned by for-profit companies, a 33% increase since 1981. The giants in the industry remain Kaiser Permanente and Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans.
HMOs have had success in attracting more and better physicians, a result of the unexpected physician glut nationally.
"Obviously, the industrialization of medicine and (Medicare prospective payment) has led the industry to realize that competing" on price is where we are going.
-HMO pioneer Paul Ellwood Jr., M.D.