In North Carolina, there are several not-for-profit hospital systems that have been spotlighted in recent articles that claim they are taking advantage of significant profits by failing to provide charity care and chasing patients with unpaid bills.
While having medical collections up to date or having a revenue cycle management company help track your billings and collections is an important part of running a hospital business, it is assumed that non-profit hospitals who provide charity care would not pay so close attention to these financial aspects.
The articles published in the Charlotte Observer newspaper have been reporting over the past week on various aspects of a hospital revenue cycle and their collection practices, including a recount of how two hospitals have filed over 24,000 lawsuits in the last five years as a means of recovering unpaid bills.
But are some hospitals really getting power hungry as this week-long series is suggesting? The newspaper, the Observer, is claiming that the Carolinas Healthcare System, for example, is making high profit margins at the expense of the financial health; however Carolinas Healthy System has objected the newspapers claim reporting that their operating margin is a better measure of their profits.
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The foreclosure crisis dramatically affected people across the United States either directly or by producing fear and uncertainty throughout the entire housing market. What is known as the United States foreclosure crisis started in 2010, but is an ongoing and a largely unsettled issue. The big banks, such as Bank of America, JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, and Citigroup, reacted by suspending foreclosure proceedings and currently, the future for the many American homeowners, or former homeowners, remains unclear and dismal.
In addition to the big banks, the healthcare industry has also gone through a number of changes, and while the revenue cycle management company industry are on the forefront of changes, it is another area that has received a lot of attention and criticism over the last few years.
According to a recent op-ed submission to the New York Times Opinion Pages, entitled “Why People Hate the Banks”, the United States, as a country hates the banks these days. Author of this column, Joe Nocera, references a recent publication from the “The American Banker”, commenting that it appears that banks unfortunately have learned little from the crisis, during which the federal government had to step in with a $25 billion settlement. Nocera explains that the crisis resulted from an accumulation of illegal practices committed by the banks and the fact that credit card collections practices also committed wrong-doings that have further damaged the integrity of the United States financial system. But could it really be that either medical collections or credit card collections companies have worsened the already dire situation?
While many are pointing the finger at collection companies with dishonest practices saying that they take advantage of the “poor and unsophisticated”, having affordable credit and goods and services is what the United States has stood for and represented.
AR Logix, Inc. is a leading medical collections training and revenue cycle management company.