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Hospitals may absorb risk of insurers' debtor patients

Bloomberg, August 19, 2013

Less than two months before health exchanges open to the public, hospitals are asking to change a part of the Affordable Care Act that leaves them at financial risk for patients who fall behind on their insurance premiums. The hospitals said in an Aug. 15 letter that the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services should reconsider the way health-insurance exchanges divide the financial responsibility for delinquent customers. The letter was signed by the American Hospital Association, the Federation of American Hospitals, and the Association of American Medical Colleges. "We are very concerned about our risk for giving uncompensated care," Joanne Alig, senior vice president for policy and research at the Wisconsin Hospital Association, said in a telephone interview.