Hospital consolidation benefits patients, report says

The Boston Globe, January 24, 2014
A national study released Thursday said growing consolidation in the hospital industry is bringing a range of benefits to patients and communities, including larger and more integrated health systems that are better able to contain costs and improve care. Funded by the Federation of American Hospitals, a trade group representing for-profit health care providers, the report contradicts other recent studies that found mergers drive up costs. The new study, prepared for the federation by the Center for Healthcare Economics and Policy, an arm of the advisory firm FTI Consulting, is likely to draw attention in Massachusetts and Washington, where state and federal regulators are weighing whether to block a bid by Boston-based Partners HealthCare, the state's largest hospital and physicians network, to expand by acquiring the 378-bed South Shore Hospital in Weymouth.

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