Bigger But Not Better: Hospital Mergers Increase Costs and Do Not Improve Quality

The final verdict on hospital networks is in. Despite all of the self promoting ads in the media, hospital mergers increase costs and do not improve quality. The Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Director of the Bureau of Economics recently stated that when hospitals merge they face less competition and charge as much 40 to 50 […]

Hospital Consolidation Continues to Boost Costs, Narrow Access, and Impact Care Quality

As hospital consolidations swept the country over the last three decades, their executives predicted the moves would produce lower costs. But decades of health services research focused on the actual results of this trend have found the opposite. Consolidation has consistently produced higher care prices. Nevertheless in 2023, health care merger mania not only continues, […]

Addressing Hospital Concentration and Rising Consolidation in the United States

The US health system in general, and the US hospital sector in particular, are largely market-based. Both public and private payers rely on competition between hospitals to drive quality. Hospitals compete with one another over prices and quality in order to attract commercially insured patients and to be included in insurers’ networks. Each year, hospitals […]

STAT News: Hospitals gear up to expand market power, raise prices in 2023

SAN FRANCISCO — More than a dozen of the country’s large not-for-profit hospital systems descended on this year’s J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference with a subtle but clear message for bankers and municipal investors: Higher costs in 2022 slowed them down, but they are adamant about increasing revenue by expanding their footprints and hiking prices. “Growth […]

Gallup News, Record High in U.S. Put Off Medical Care Due to Cost in 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The percentage of Americans reporting they or a family member postponed medical treatment in 2022 due to cost rose 12 points in one year, to 38%, the highest in Gallup’s 22-year trend. Each year since 2001, Gallup has tracked Americans’ self-reports of delaying medical care in the past 12 months due to […]

Politico Opinion | Hospitals Are a Problem. Competition Is the Answer.

January 19, 2023 Antitrust strategies could go a long way toward reining in rising health care costs. Some things in health care are not so complicated. One rudimentary principle of economics applies in health care markets, as anywhere: When there’s less competition, prices are higher. This has been especially true for America’s hospitals, the largest […]

Roll Call: Nonprofit hospitals should act like nonprofits

Bipartisan support for ensuring nonprofit hospitals adhere to missions  In an ideal world, every nonprofit hospital would be genuinely devoted to charitable purposes, to caring for the sick, the poor, and the infirm, ensuring equitable access to quality health care. The IRS even has rules requiring nonprofit hospitals to provide financial assistance and other community […]

Axios Vitals 2.06.2023: Hospital transparency rule compliance remains low

Only a quarter of hospitals studied were fully compliant with a federal price transparency rule, according to a new report by Patient Rights Advocate — but compliance is a spectrum, Axios’ Caitlin Owens writes. Why it matters: The findings come as Congress has expressed bipartisan concern over compliance with the Trump administration rule and potential […]