Experts say it’s because more than 80 percent of the nearly 6,500 dialysis facilities nationally are owned by two for-profit companies, and they want to see a return on the money spent building and staffing those dialysis clinics. In other industry news: decisions on investments and donors for hospitals.
In an era when just about every medical treatment that can be done at home is moving in that direction, only about 12% of patients receiving kidney dialysis do so at home, despite it being cheaper and research showing it’s just as safe. There are a host of reasons why. Most people cite physicians’ lack of training on home dialysis and their resulting reluctance to suggest it. Sometimes patients themselves are too sick or overwhelmed to take on that task. (Bannow, 1/26)
Healthcare providers—and all businesses for that matter—constantly debate whether to make short-term investments to maintain their core business or to put profits toward alternative revenue sources that hold potential long-term returns. Those questions are even more pressing as health systems’ expenses climb and revenue falls. They’re also grappling with the reality of the hospital’s diminishing role as care—and revenue—shift to the ambulatory space. Investment income is keeping hospitals viable while operating margins wane, but spinning off new ventures can also be a potential buffer. (Kacik, 1/26)
Nonprofit hospitals across the United States are seeking donations from the people who rely on them most: their patients. Many hospitals conduct nightly wealth screenings — using software that culls public data such as property records, contributions to political campaigns and other charities — to gauge which patients are most likely to be the source of large donations.Those who seem promising targets for fundraising may receive a visit from a hospital executive in their rooms, as well as extra amenities like a bathrobe or a nicer waiting area for their families. (Galewitz, 1/28)
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