Your current web browser is outdated. For best viewing experience, please consider upgrading to the latest version.

Donation - Other Level

Please use the quantity box to donate any amount you wish. Sign Up to Donate

Contact

Send a question or comment using the form below. This message may be routed through support staff.

Email Article

Password Reset Request

Register


Add a topic or expert to your feed.

Following

Follow Experts & Topics

Stay on top of our work by selecting topics and experts of interest.

Experts
Topics
Project
On The Ground
ERROR
Main Error Mesage Here
More detailed message would go here to provide context for the user and how to proceed
ERROR
Main Error Mesage Here
More detailed message would go here to provide context for the user and how to proceed

Manhattan Institute

search
Close Nav
Share this commentary on Close

Single-Payer Health Care Would Cost Some Western New York Hospitals

commentary

Single-Payer Health Care Would Cost Some Western New York Hospitals

The Buffalo News November 7, 2018
Health PolicyOther

The debate about a proposed single-payer health plan for New York State has mostly focused on its potential cost. But far less attention has been paid to the radical impact it may have on hospitals and physicians across the state.

To fill in the blanks, a forthcoming report by the Manhattan Institute and the Empire Center explores how different single-payer reimbursement methodologies would affect hospital revenues. It finds that such systems would dramatically change the financial outlook for many institutions – with some of the state’s best-regarded hospitals paying an especially heavy price.

Currently, hospitals collect their revenue from dozens of health plans, each of which pays different amounts. Hospitals with reputations for the highest quality or dominant market positions can both attract more privately insured patients and command higher rates. This is how flagships such as New York-Presbyterian and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center can afford top-notch personnel and cutting-edge equipment.

Under a single-payer system, some of the state’s best-regarded hospitals would pay an especially heavy price.

Under single-payer, by contrast, all patients would become entitled to exactly the same coverage. This would likely therefore result in a radical redistribution of resources. Hospitals currently serving poorer patients would generally gain revenue, while hospitals currently serving wealthier, better-insured patients would generally see their revenue diminished.

To estimate the likely impact, our study assumed that a state-run reimbursement system would resemble Medicare rates – which are designed to account for variation in the cost of delivering equivalent medical services across the state.

In one scenario, we assumed hospitals would charge all patients at current Medicare levels, as proposed by Sen. Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All bill. Under this method, 77 percent of the state’s hospitals would lose money and 23 percent would gain. Overall statewide hospital funding would be slashed by 17 percent, or $10 billion per year.

In Western New York, Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center and Mount St. Mary’s Hospital would gain about $114 million each. But losses would hit Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center ($61 million), Kaleida Health ($59 million) and Erie County Medical Center ($52 million).

Under a second scenario, we assumed the state would boost Medicare rates enough to keep total hospital funding level. Under this method, two-thirds of hospitals would come out ahead. But one-third of hospitals would still be worse off. In Western New York, losers in this second scenario would include BryLin Hospital (a cut of $2.3 million or 15 percent) and Jones Memorial Hospital in Wellsville ($2.1 million or 6 percent).

In either scenario, hospitals taking the largest losses would face significant layoffs, diminished quality of care and the possibility of closing completely.

This piece originally appeared at The Buffalo News

______________________

Bill Hammond is the health policy director at the Empire Center for Public Policy, and Chris Pope is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute.

Saved!
Close