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5 Healthcare Uncertainties Made Clearer

Karen Minich-Pourshadi, for HealthLeaders Media, August 27, 2012

2. Ratings agencies outlooks. Both Moody's and Standard and Poor's have written extensively about how healthcare reform will negatively influence hospital and health system ratings. In mid-July Moody's Healthcare Quarterly reported that even new revenue sources for not-for-profit hospitals won't offset Medicare reductions of $150 billion over the next 10 years.

The Moody's report follows on the heels of a June S&P Healthcare Economic Index report finding that the average per capita cost of healthcare services covered by commercial insurance and Medicare programs has increased by 6.14% over the 12-months ending April 2012. Both reports offer a dour perspective, but they are nevertheless essential reading for financial leaders.

3. Innovation delayed. Before the historic Supreme Court ruling on the ACA, we knew that the long-awaited decision was negatively impacting healthcare business innovation. The upshot? Growth is still compromised. For even if a hospital or health system opts to grow—likely through a merger—it still may flounder without at least attempting to pioneer some new programs.

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