Finance

For-profit hospitals’ struggles with declining admissions will be made worse if more states enact work requirements in their Medicaid programs, according to a new report from Fitch Ratings.

Hospital groups have sued CMS to reverse $1.6 billion in cuts to Medicare payments made under the 340B drug discount program, but a new study from Avalere said only 15 percent of facilities will see a net payment reduction thanks to redistributing those funds under the Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS).

2017 will go down as the year mergers and acquisitions activity “shook the healthcare landscape,” according to a report from Kaufman Hall, with more deals worth $1 billion or more being announced than in any prior year.

Boston’s Partners HealthCare and Providence, R.I.-based Care New England have agreed to enter into a definitive merger agreement, though one has not yet been signed nine months after the systems began exclusive negotiations.

Increased prices for many healthcare services were almost entirely responsible for driving up healthcare spending by 15 percent between 2012 and 2016, according to a report by the Health Care Cost Institute (HCCI).

If accountable care organizations (ACOs) had moved from the upside-only Track 1 of the Medicare Shared Savings Program and assumed downside risk, they would’ve earned an additional $966 million if they qualified for the 5 percent bonus for Advanced Alternative Payment Models (AAPMs). Without that bonus, however, the financial benefits would disappear.

The Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) will have 561 accountable care organizations (ACOs) participating in 2018, including 124 new entrants into the program, covering a total of 10.5 million assigned beneficiaries, according to CMS.

The American Hospital Association, America’s Essential Hospitals, the Association of American Medical Colleges and three health systems will appeal the dismissal of its lawsuit seeking to block $1.6 billion in cuts to Medicare payments made through the 340B drug discount program.

Later this year, providers wanting to take advantage of the 5 percent bonus for participating in an Advanced Alternative Payment Model (AAPM) can join the new Bundled Payments For Care Improvement-Advanced Model (BPCI-A) launched by CMS on Jan. 9.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System, also known as Penn Medicine, has finalized its acquisition of the Plainsboro, New Jersey-based Princeton HealthCare System (PHCS) extending its reach into the Garden State.

America’s Essential Hospitals has announced a new advocacy and advertising campaign seeking a delay in cuts to Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) payments, which are set to be reduced by $2 billion in the current fiscal year.

The expansion of Medicaid eligibility under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) made hospitals less likely to close, especially in rural markets, according to study published in the January edition of Health Affairs.