The proposed state biennial budget is under consideration in the Ohio House of Representatives (Sub HB 153). As proposed, the budget contains several provisions that would be harmful to Dayton Children’s and the other Ohio’s children’s hospitals.
We recognize the significant economic challenges facing Ohio. However, there is a lack of recognition in Substitute HB 153 for the hundreds of millions of dollars Ohio’s Children’s Hospitals already lose serving Ohio’s Medicaid children; for the nationally renowned quality improvement efforts we are leading that improve Medicaid outcomes and reduce Medicaid costs; and most importantly, for the unique role children’s hospitals like Dayton Children’s, play as a safety net provider in Ohio’s health care delivery system and in Ohio’s Medicaid program.
Consider the following:
CHILDREN’S HOSPITALS ARE THE HIGHEST MEDICAID PROVIDERS IN OHIO: Half of the patients in children’s hospitals rely on Medicaid – that’s up from 43 percent just two years ago. Because of our high Medicaid population, any changes in Medicaid funding disproportionately affect children’s hospitals. At Dayton Children’s, we are currently over 50% Medicaid, and we have experienced a 7% shift from commercially insured to Medicaid in just the past three years. Each 1 percent shift means a $1.6 million loss.
OHIO’S CHILDREN’S HOSPITALS ARE LEADING THE NATION IN QUALITY IMPROVEMENT & PATIENT SAFETY: Ohio’s Children’s hospitals lead the nation in quality improvement and patient safety. And we are relentlessly working to achieve our vision of making Ohio the safest place in the country for children to receive health care by driving improved outcomes and pulling costs out of the system. Dayton Children’s has received national and state recognition for our work to improve patient care.
OHIO’S CHILDREN’S HOSPITALS COSTS BELOW NATIONAL AVERAGE: According to the Governor’s Office of Health Transformation, Ohio Medicaid costs for children are 22% below the national average. At Dayton Children’s our board of trustees has worked hard to be sure we have the highest quality but also that we are a good value for our region. All the Ohio children’s hospitals are a great value to Ohioans – taxpayers, decision makers and most importantly our patients.
MEDICAID LOSSES FOR CHILDREN’S HOSITALS TOTALED $225 MILLION: In 2009,Medicaid losses from Ohio’s Children’s Hospitals totaled $225 million, up from $202 million in 2008, equating to children’s hospitals total loss of $427 million over the equivalent of two period of a biennium. Last year Dayton Children’s had Medicaid shortfalls of over $20 million. Even when combining current reimbursement rates, our children’s hospital line item funding and the Hospital Care Assurance Program funding, children’s hospitals have a more than 20 percent gap between our Medicaid costs and what we are reimbursed from the state for these costs.
Dayton Children's is asking all of our advocates to contact their legislators about these important issues.
Dayton Children’s and the other Ohio’s children’s hospitals are driven by mission – to serve every child in Ohio regardless of their family’s ability to pay. And, we have a vision – to make Ohio the safest place in the country for children’s health care. The proposed changes in Substitute HB 153 could jeopardize this mission and vision, as they disproportionately affect children’s hospitals, have the potential to be devastating to our institutions and more than offset any benefit we may realize from the hospital franchise fee proposal.
We hope you will consider writing your legislators and supporting Dayton Children's!
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