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How 'profitable' are ME hospitals? It depends

Bangor Daily News, March 18, 2013

The money that Maine owes to its hospitals under the MaineCare program has touched off fevered political debate in recent weeks, with the hospitals warning of "dire consequences" that could jeopardize access to health care. Finding out how the debt has affected hospitals' bottom lines is difficult as the state hospital association and a state agency disagree on a seemingly simple measure of their profitability. Questions about the discrepancy between the hospitals' lobbying group and the state health data organization over a widely publicized metric of hospital profitability highlight the complexity of assessing the financial health of Maine's hospitals.