Physician-owned hospitals 'devastated' by reform

Not everyone is happy about the passage of healthcare reform, particularly physician-owned hospitals, which claim that the law will threaten thousands of healthcare jobs and compromise rural- and inner-city patients' access to care.

According to Molly Sandvig, Executive Director of Physician Hospitals of America, which represents 220 physician-owned hospitals, the legislation virtually destroys more than 60 hospitals that are currently under development, and severely limits their opportunities for growth. "In total, over 25,000 jobs are at risk in 37 states," Sandvig said. "Billions of dollars already invested in hospitals stand to be lost. And, rural and inner city hospitals being rescued and kept open by physician investment will now close."

Should the Senate pass the reconciliation bill, the ban on physician-owned hospitals won't begin until Dec. 31; the current deadline for "grandfathering new hospitals" according to Becker's Hospital Review is Aug. 1. The extension would allow 13 more hospitals to gain approval before the ban goes into effect.

PHA says it is continuing to work with Senate and House supporters to "explore all other legislative and regulatory options to mitigate the harm caused by the current language."

To learn more:
- read this PHA press release
- read this Becker's Hospital Review article