Consolidation in health care is creating a tightening bind for independent doctors across the country, according to a recent article in The New York Times.
Reduced Medicare reimbursements and higher technology costs are just some reasons why the percentage of independent doctors nationwide has dropped from 57 percent to 39 percent since 2000, according to estimates by Accenture, a consulting firm. Hospitals, private equity firms and health insurance companies are also acquiring physician practices at a rapid rate.
Doctors who have sold their practices and become employees of large hospitals describe growing pressure by the hospitals that dictate which tests and procedures to perform, how much to charge and which patients to admit. Unnecessary tests and procedures are largely performed and patients who do not need a hospital stay are admitted just to meet the hospital's financial goals.
"We're seeing a lot more consolidation that we did 10 years ago," said Jeffrey Perry, an assistant director in the Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Competition. "Historically, what we've seen with the consolidation in the health care industry is that prices go up, but quality does not improve." Read the full details here:
"This is another disturbing example of hospitals placing profits in front of the concern for the patients they treat," said Steve Crandall, a top-rated medical malpractice attorney throughout Ohio and Kentucky. "Many patients are injured at hospitals they should not have been admitted to or by tests that should not have been ordered."
If you or someone you know was injured in a hospital anywhere in the United States, you should consult with a qualified attorney to determine why. Please contact Crandall & Pera Law for a free, no-obligation case review.