© 2008 The Medical-Legal News
An article in the AARP Bulletin of July/August 2008 reported that hospitals are more frequently demanding down payments from patients, before care will be rendered, if the patients are uninsured or underinsured.
The article quoted an American Hospital Association official who said that uncompensated hospital care has grown from $19 billion in 1998 to $31 billion in 2006, and the official also said half of all hospitals lose money on patient care, thus forcing them to seek money from grants and donations.
However, the article noted a Wall Street Journal analysis that found that the 50 largest not-for-profit U.S. hospitals had a net income of $4.27 billion in 2006, an eight-fold increase over 2001. Additionally, the article said the country’s 3,000 community not-for-profit hospitals receive $50 billion per year in subsidies and tax exemptions.
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