One more court issue over money and it makes you wonder how much of the current economic times are filling up the court rooms and case files? We may lack in health care but legal care seems to keep moving along. This hospital states there’s not enough in the budget and tells officials that cut backs are not enough, this is a top rated hospital in the country. BD
BOSTON — A hospital that serves thousands of indigent Massachusetts residents sued the state on Wednesday, charging that its costly universal health care law is forcing the hospital to cover too much of the expense of caring for the poor.
The hospital, Boston Medical Center, faces a $38 million deficit for the fiscal year ending in September, its first loss in five years. The suit says the hospital will lose more than $100 million next year because the state has lowered Medicaid reimbursement rates and stopped paying Boston Medical “reasonable costs” for treating other poor patients.
According to the suit, Massachusetts is now reimbursing Boston Medical only 64 cents for every dollar it spends treating the poor. About 10 percent of the hospital’s patients are uninsured — down from about 20 percent before the law’s passage in 2006. But many more are on Medicaid or Commonwealth Care, the state-subsidized insurance program for low-income residents.
State officials have suggested that Boston Medical could reduce costs by operating more efficiently. The state has also pointed out that the hospital has reserves of about $190 million, but Tom Traylor, the hospital’s vice president of federal and state programs, said the reserves could only sustain the hospital for about a year.