Hospitals see fuzzy future for patient volume, predict an additional $120B in losses this year

Dive Brief:

A June survey from the American Hospital Association paints a grim outlook for systems hoping to return to typical volumes anytime this year. The majority (67%) of respondents said they didnt believe they would attain standard volumes by the end of this year, while 30% reported the timeframe was “unknown” or that they “never” anticipated to go back to baseline volumes.
The report looked at reactions from AHA members at 1,360 health centers throughout 48 states, and found that current inpatient volume is down 19.5%, while outpatient volume is down 34.5% relative to baseline levels.
The health center lobby is advising Congress for more federal aid to support struggling systems, estimating an extra $120.5 billion in overall monetary losses from July 2020 through December 2020 if medical facilities cant reach standard client volumes until next summertime, as expected.

Dive Insight:

The new report brings the total predicted losses to hospitals and health systems in 2020 to a minimum of $323.1 billion. The medical facility lobby formerly approximated $202.6 billion in losses for healthcare facilities and health systems over the four-month period in between March 2020 and June 2020.

AHA approximated that hospitals have actually received around $54.6 billion of the $102.6 billion in CARES Act relief funds that have been disbursed by HHS.

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AHA stated the existing funds, a few of which have yet to be dispersed, “still pale in contrast to the losses that hospitals and health systems have actually already incurred and will continue to deal with through the end of 2020 and likely into 2021.” It stated more financial backing is “urgently needed.”.

Regardless of some states lifting moratoriums on elective treatments and other rolled back stay-at-home orders, healthcare facilities are still having a hard time to go back to typical operations.

Other expenses omitted from the analysis consist of: drug acquisition and scarcity costs, wage and labor expenses, unremunerated care expenses, non-PPE medical materials and devices expenses and capital expenses from broadening screening and bed capabilities.

Patients continue to postpone care for non-COVID-19 diseases. At the very same time, coronavirus surges in the South and West have health centers dealing with extra costs for increased personal protective devices, staff and bed capacity.

Healthcare facility expenses to deal with COVID patients exceed expected compensation, which results in additional financial losses, according to AHA.

However the funds are intended for all doctor and suppliers, not just health centers.

That figure does not represent presently increasing case rates in some states or prospective subsequent rises of the pandemic occurring later on this year, AHA kept in mind.

Congress tried to help having a hard time providers this March through the $100 billion Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act designated an extra $75 billion.