Financing Hospital Care in the United States

Since the 60’s, Medical costs have risen dramatically in the U.S. The greatest increase comes from hospital care. Most hospitals have been granted large wage increase and installed expensive modern equipments. To meet these large expenditures, hospitals raised charges to their services by about 600 percent.

hospitalThere are three main methods of financing hospital care in the country: (1) private insurance, (2) government funding, and (3) customer payments.

Private Insurance. Approximately 80% of Americans have health insurance of some kind. The employee, employer, and the government pays a certain amount for medical benefits. Private health insurance are offered either by insurance companies, medical service plans, employers, or organizations.

Medical service plans provide service benefits. This service is a direct payment to the physician or hospital for medical care. On the other hand, Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO’s) provide nearly complete health care services for a monthly or annual fee. Despite the complete services provided, patient’s options are limited or are bonded by the HMO’s restrictions. There are also employers who pay for the health care cost for their employees rather than buying insurance.

Government Funding. About 40 percent of all health care cost is paid by the government. Of course, the Federal government pays for the larger portion. Hospitals that receive such funding are those managed by the Public Health Service and the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Medicare is the biggest government funded health care program in the U.S. IT helps senior citizens pay for out patient, nursing and hospital care.

Customer Payments. Most insurance do no pay for cost of medicine, medical appliances, dental , and eyeglasses. Some only cover a portion of the outpatient care. Patients will need to cover part of the cost themselves. Nearly 25% of health care cost is paid by patients.

Hospital Associated Pneumonia Prevention

Hospital associated pneumonia has become a great concern nowadays. According to WHO, pneumonia acquired from hospitals’ morbidity and mortality rates are staggering high. For those who are not aware, pneumonia that starts in the hospital tends to be more serious than other lung infections.

hospitalThis growing concern is due to several factors. Usually, the infection spreads when patients use respirators – machine for breathing. During hospital stay, patients are more vulnerable to germs or viruses since they are not well enough to fit the off. Patients who are more prone to this disease in the hospital are those who had surgeries, chemo therapy (cancer treatment with low immunity), have chronic lung disease, elderly, and alcoholic.

Germs are also passed from one health care staff to another through hand contact or clothing. This is why they are required to wear gloves and masks when on duty. There are also other ways to avoid the dreadful disease.

The best way to stop the spread of germs is through frequent hand washing, stay at home when sick, and boost immunity. People who need to visit their loved ones in the hospital must make sure that they have taken steps in preventing the spread of germs: bring hand sanitizer, wear masks and gloves, and never bring an infant or child. If you have contact with a person in the hospital, never place your hand from your face. When someone coughs or sneezes, cover your nose and mouth with clean tissue or hanky. Do the same when you sneeze or cough as well.

In-patients who are very young and old or very ill at greater risk of such infections. To prevent the spread of germs, get up-to-date vaccination. Ask your doctor about flu and anti-viral vaccinations available. With good preventive measures, you can ensure to have a disease-free life.

Hospital CEOs

Professionals at medical centers that have a lot of high-tech devices and great individual fulfillment are paid more than their colleagues, a research of CEO settlement at charitable medical centers finds. Running a hospital that scores well on keeping more sufferers alive or providing comprehensive charitable organization care doesn’t convert into a pay increase. “The finding on quality is frustrating,” says Dr. Ashish Jha, a lecturer at the Harvard School of Public Health and one of the study’s writers. “It says that most boards are more targeted on the coolest technological innovation around. This paper indicates that maybe we need to pay a little more attention to other more important results, such as whether your sufferers are dying at a higher rate or not.”

HospitalCEOs of technology-happy charitable medical centers gained $136,000 more, on average, than those with little innovative equipment, according to the research released in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. CEOs at places with great individual fulfillment ratings gained $52,000 more, on average, than those with poor reviews. The research discovered no difference in CEO settlement based on openly available actions of quality, such as death rate, re-admissions prices and how continually medical centers followed a number of openly revealed recommendations for recommended care. The results are in line with a report last year that targeted on New Hampshire medical centers and also discovered no relationship between CEO pay and high quality of care.

Nonprofit medical centers have been under analysis for spending high incomes to CEOs while skimping on benefits for their communities. Dr. Nancy Joynt, the study’s lead writer, says that since charitable medical centers don’t have to pay any property taxation, the scientists wanted to see if there was any proof hospital boards provided dollars to CEOs to provide more charitable organization care, such as dealing with lots of low-income sufferers and discounting or waiving bills for those who had trouble spending. “We didn’t see a sign at all,” she says. The research is the first to use federal tax profits of medical centers to evaluate CEO pay and the aspects that are associated with it. The scientists analyzed records for 2,581 medical centers, more than 98 percent of private charitable medical centers. For-profit medical centers, which are a minority of America’s acute care medical centers, weren’t included in the research. The research recognized 1,877 executives, with some who ran more than one hospital.