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Jackson Health gets through July

Miami Herald, August 11, 2011

The financially beleaguered Jackson Health System managed to limp through July, losing about $4 million in a month that leaders earlier this year worried would bring financial catastrophe. "We're still in a very tight state," CEO Carlos Migoya said Wednesday. "But we're focusing on improvements in the month ahead." The public health system -- called a "colossal mess" by a Miami-Dade grand jury last year -- lost $337 million the past two years and is down about $75.4 million so far this fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30. Jackson is the safety net hospital for the 650,000 uninsured in Miami-Dade County, for which it gets $350 million a year in sales and property tax revenue. And though Migoya is touting the changes he's making to cut costs, he also must focus on problems. Cash on hand is expected to fall to 9.8 days' worth in August, a situation that will mean Jackson will delay paying some of its bills. He said his new executive team, in place for less than three months, is dealing with a growing list of "surprises" as well. On the top of the list: the JMH Health Plan, which has ever-increasing losses -- partly because many of Jackson's own employees are choosing to be treated at the University of Miami Hospital, across the street from their own Jackson Memorial.