Tags: Ebola Outbreak | Healthcare Reform | texas | health | presbyterian | ebola | medicare

Texas Ebola Hospital Losing Medicare Reimbursements Next Year

By    |   Saturday, 20 Dec 2014 12:13 PM

Texas Health Presbyterian Dallas, where two nurses were infected with the Ebola virus and the site of the only death from the disease, is among several North Texas hospitals that will lose a portion of their Medicare reimbursements through an Obamacare provision that penalizes hospitals for care issues.

The safety problems included in scores for the Dallas hospital the others were for issues taking place between 2011 and 2013, not for this year's incidents, reported the Dallas Morning News.

The Dallas hospital, along with a dozen other hospitals including Medical City Dallas, Baylor University Medical Center and Parkland Memorial Hospital stand to lose one percent of their reimbursements, totaling millions of dollars, in 2015.

The news comes as business seems to be returning to normal at Texas Health Presbyterian just two months after it was at the center of an Ebola crisis that sparked nationwide panic this fall, the newspaper also reported.

Daily net revenue and surgeries at the hospital have returned to where they were before Liberian patient Thomas Eric Duncan was diagnosed there. He died on Oct. 8, and two nurses who cared for him, Nina Pham, and Amber Vinson, contracted the disease but both have made a full recovery.

It will still likely take some time for Texas Health to recover from its losses from this past fall, though. Weeks after Duncan's death, the hospital reported its net revenue had dropped by $8.1 million, or 25.6 percent, over the first 20 days of October. Surgeries went down by 25 percent and emergency room visits took a 50 percent drop.

Medicare released its assessments on Thursday, with around 700 hospitals nationwide to take a hit in Medicare funding next year, the newspaper reported.

Under Obamacare, the nation's hospitals receive scores that reflect the number of patients that end up with infections, bed sores, or other problems resulting from hospital care.

In fiscal year 2015, about a quarter of the nation's hospitals with the worst scores will lose one percent of their Medicare funding, which could total millions of dollars lost nationwide, as most hospitals rely on Medicare to make up to two-thirds of their revenue, the paper reported.

Texas Health Presbyterian received about $170 million, according to txpricepoint.org, the Texas Hospital Association’s price transparency website.

Texas Health Presbyterian officials did not comment to the newspaper about the Medicare report.

Medicare has been rewarding and punishing hospitals through reimbursements since 2008, and three years ago also began penalizing facilities for patients who are readmitted within 30 days after they are discharged.

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Texas Health Presbyterian Dallas, where two nurses were infected with the Ebola virus and the site of the only death from the disease, is among several North Texas hospitals that will lose a portion of their Medicare reimbursements through an Obamacare provision that...
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2014-13-20
Saturday, 20 Dec 2014 12:13 PM
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