Hearing Before the Health Care Financing Committee on Wednesday

Hospital profits and executive compensation came under fire on Wednesday, what is your opinion as a Maappn member to the hearing yesterday in Boston? Nurses and Union leaders are calling for a bill to force hospitals to disclose their financial information. Your thoughts and comments on this topic have meaning to our membership.

Hearing Before the Health Care Financing Committee on Wednesday

STATE HOUSE, BOSTON, JUNE 3, 2015…..Hospital profits and executive compensation came under fire Wednesday from nurses and union leaders who packed a hearing to urge the Legislature to pass a bill forcing hospitals to disclose their financial holdings and pay penalties on excessive profits and pay.

Fueled by the closures over the past year of full-service hospitals in North Adams and Quincy, health care workers associated with the Massachusetts Nurses Association lamented that critical services, including mental health and pediatric care units, are being shuttered while executives are taking home larger paychecks and hospitals are stashing funds in offshore accounts in the Caribbean.

“Hospital CEO’s should not get rich while our families struggle to secure basic services for our children,” said Susan Wright Thomas, from Cambridge Health Alliance.

Bills filed by Rep. Josh Cutler in the House and Sen. Michael Moore in the Senate (H 979/S 623) would require hospitals to report to the Center for Health Information Analysis all assets and financial holdings, including those held by offshore financial institutions and investments outside the United States.

“Transparency of health care costs is one of the key ingredients to our health care system,” said Cutler, a Duxbury Democrat.

Hospitals with less than 60 percent of patients on Medicaid that report profits in excess of 8 percent or any hospital that receives state funding and compensates its CEO at a rate greater than 100 times the annual salary of the facility’s lowest paid employee would also have to pay penalties. Those fines would be put into new Medicaid account to increase rates for hospitals with larger low-income patient populations.

The bills were the subject of a hearing before the Health Care Financing Committee on Wednesday, co-chaired by Rep. Jeffrey Sanchez, of Boston, and Sen. James Welch, of Springfield.

 

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