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Hospital Rates

BUSINESS
By Joel Obermayer and Joel Obermayer,Sun Staff Writer | April 7, 1994
Hospital rates in the state will outpace inflation, but not by as much as first planned.That was the decision yesterday by the state agency that sets hospital rates -- a move that may save Maryland consumers an estimated $25 million in health care charges this year.The Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission said the hospitals must forgo part of their automatic annual rate increase for new services and capital projects. Hospitals will be allowed to raise rates about 1.5 percent more than inflation instead of the slightly more than the 2 percent that the state's formula allows.
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HEALTH
By Andrea K. Walker, The Baltimore Sun | May 6, 2013
The Maryland Hospital Association has sent a letter to state health officials saying it will not support a proposal that would link medical spending to the state's economic growth. The state presented the proposal to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in March as part of an application to update its Medicare waiver, an agreement with the federal government unique to Maryland that allows the state to set uniform hospital rates. The hospital association has said in the past the proposal raises concerns, but the April 25 letter is the first time the group publicly said it would not support it. The letter is addressed to Health Secretary Joshua M. Sharfstein and John M. Colmers, chairman of the Health Services Cost Review Commission, the agency that sets hospital rates in Maryland.
HEALTH
By Andrea K. Walker, The Baltimore Sun | April 6, 2013
A state plan to tie medical spending to the growth of the economy is making hospital executives uneasy. Executives support the spirit of the plan proposed by the state Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, which seeks to reduce health spending by shifting patient care away from their facilities and toward more outpatient and preventive care. But they worry that its spending goals are too aggressive, and that they can't be attained in the time period the state has laid out. And they say it lacks necessary details on key elements, including how hospitals can be expected to limit spending increases to state economic growth.
HEALTH
By Andrea K. Walker, The Baltimore Sun | April 25, 2013
The state's hospitals would absorb all of the 2 percent Medicare cuts required by federal sequestration under a proposal released Thursday by the state panel that sets hospital rates. The recommendation by the staff of the Health Services Cost Review Commission would mean that state hospitals would not get rate increases for the last three months of fiscal year 2013, a decision that prompted intense criticism from medical institutions that say they already operate on slim margins.
NEWS
April 28, 2001
State hospital rates have not kept pace with increasing costs A rebuttal by the state hospital regulatory commission to a recent column by Barry Rascovar ("State can't afford prescription drugs," Opinion Commentary, March 25) left readers with the wrong impression ("Hospital rates reflect state's careful formula," letters, April 14). In recent years, Maryland hospital rates -- set by state regulations -- have not kept pace with inflation. The cost of salaries to recruit and retain a qualified workforce, investments in patient-safety initiatives and keeping up with new technologies and life-saving drugs has risen much more rapidly than the rates have.
NEWS
March 6, 2014
Maryland's health care system faces its greatest transformation in a generation - not because of the state's troubled health insurance exchange or even directly because of the Affordable Care Act but because of a change in the state's decades-old system for compensating hospitals. Under the terms of Maryland's newly updated waiver to Medicare rules, hospitals will make profits by keeping people well and out of their wards rather than by admitting them and treating them when they get sick.
BUSINESS
By M. William Salganik and M. William Salganik,SUN STAFF | June 27, 1997
The state's HMO trade group told hospital rate-setters yesterday that they do not have legal authority to craft a "political compromise" on a plan to squeeze hospital rates.David M. Funk, a lawyer for the Maryland Association of Health Maintenance Organizations, said at a public hearing before the Health Services Cost Review Commission that it must go ahead with a plan to reduce hospital rates by nearly 4 percent, since the law creating the commission requires it to keep hospital costs reasonable.
HEALTH
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | January 11, 2013
The state commission that regulates hospital rates has not kept adequate tabs on hospital billings, according to legislative auditors, who say that four hospitals they checked have overcharged by more than $13 million. An audit of three regulatory agencies under the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene found "control deficiencies" at one, the Health Services Cost Review Commission, which left auditors with a "lack of assurance" that billings by the state's 53 hospitals were proper.
BUSINESS
By Patricia Meisol and Patricia Meisol,Staff Writer | February 4, 1993
The cost of treating the uninsured at Maryland hospitals last year jumped by the largest amount in 12 years, prompting economists who run the state's hospital regulatory system to call for more affordable health insurance.But profits statewide jumped 85 percent last year after the system approved higher rates to pay for the expected increase in the number of people unable to pay for medical care.The bill for the uninsured -- $394 million -- grew 28 percent, according to figures released yesterday by the Health Services Cost Review Commission, which sets hospital rates in Maryland.
BUSINESS
By M. William Salganik and M. William Salganik,Sun reporter | January 4, 2007
With hospital charges across the country rising faster than expected, Maryland's average hospital bill has fallen further behind the national average than had been projected - creating a multimillion-dollar dilemma for the Health Services Cost Review Commission, the state rate-setting panel. Hospitals say Maryland rates can rise slightly faster than national rates for the next two fiscal years and still meet the commission's target of keeping hospital costs below the national average. The commission's staff, backed by insurers, argue that hospitals will still be more profitable than today, even if rates should rise at a slower pace.
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