IRS seeking input on instructions for Form 990

As most FierceHealthFinance readers know, the IRS released a redesigned Form 990 last year. The new Form 990, which has sparked much discussion and controversy among not-for-profit healthcare organizations, includes a new schedule for hospitals (Schedule H) and tax-exempt bonds (Schedule K). Schedule H, which is likely to prove taxing to hospitals for the first year or two, requires hospitals to provide a lot of information on operations that it didn't before, including community benefit levels, charity care, aggregate bad debt expense, Medicare shortfall information and more.

Now, the IRS is asking the healthcare community to let it know whether its instructions for filling out this form, which include tools designed to make it easier to answer questions and to promote uniform reporting, are clear enough for public use. Through June 1 of this year, it's accepting comments on the draft instructions. The agency will post all comments on its website. To comment, you can email thoughts to [email protected] in text form. Yeah, I know, this doesn't sound very exciting, but the truth is, if you don't like what they've got, it never hurts to declare that clearly in a public forum. Hey, sound off while you can!

To learn more about the Form 990 update process:
- read this Modern Healthcare piece (reg. req.)

Related Articles:
Trend: Non-profits broadening charity care access. Charity care report
In 2007, bad debt rising for hospitals. Hospital report
Bad debt savages HCA, LifePoint profits. HCA, LifePoint report
Bad debt hits Health Management Assoc. earnings. Health Management Associates report
Ratings firms slam nonprofit hospital finances. Financial ratings report
Officials say 'prove it!' on charity care. Charity care report

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