HUNTINGDON VALLEY, Pa.-Holy Redeemer Health System said recently that it would hand over its information technology department to Siemens Medical Solutions in a 10-year deal valued at more than $105 million. The deal calls for Holy Redeemer, which operates a 303-bed hospital and several other healthcare facilities, to upgrade its current Siemens financial and clinical IT systems to the latest Siemens products and buy from Siemens a radiology information system and picture archiving and communications system, as well as diagnostic imaging equipment. Siemens, in turn, will hire 30 IT workers from Holy Redeemer and manage both the department and the implementation and servicing of the new systems. "They fixed our costs throughout the life of the contract, and that was huge," said Mark Jones, chief operating officer at Holy Redeemer. The deal allows the system to meet its IT goals while spreading the costs over 10 years, Jones said.
NEW YORK-The Greater New York Hospital Association recently filed a long-promised lawsuit against HHS to reverse new Medicare regulations determining how hospitals are reimbursed for local labor costs. The complaint, filed on behalf of 76 New York hospitals, was filed in U.S. District Court in New York. It charges that the CMS "capriciously and arbitrarily" established new metropolitan service areas, which are used to adjust Medicare reimbursement for area wage differences. Under new regulations that went into effect Oct. 1, 2004, hospitals in three New Jersey counties were moved into the New York wage-index area, ultimately costing New York hospitals $53 million in fiscal 2005 and $980 million over the next 10 years, according to the GNYHA. The association filed an appeal with the CMS' Provider Reimbursement Review Board in September to exhaust administrative remedies. The GNYHA will file a motion for summary judgment within the next three weeks, said Susan Waltman, the association's senior vice president and general counsel. "It's a very significant impact," she said of the changes. "We have to move very fast."