The Government Accountability Office began seeking data on uncompensated care by hospitals in 2002 and 2003 at the request of House Ways and Means Chairman Rep. Bill Thomas (R-Calif.). A GAO letter obtained by Modern Healthcare said, "Generally, we would like to learn about: your data categories and definitions (such as what is included in uncompensated care), the process of data collection and review, the availability of hospital identifiers ... and the availability of other descriptive information (tax-exempt status during the given reporting year)." At deadline, it was unclear whether the letter was being sent to individual hospitals, state agencies or both, and calls to the GAO and Thomas were not returned. Thomas has been examining whether not-for-profit hospitals provide enough community benefits to warrant tax-exempt status. -- by Tony Fong
GAO researching hospital uncompensated care
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