KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

Medicare Targets 5 Fla. Hospitals For Patient Readmissions

Several articles highlight problems at local hospitals.

Health News Florida: Return Rate High At 5 Big Hospitals
Five of Florida's major public and non-profit hospitals scored so poorly on return rates for Medicare patients that they will get preference this summer in a grant program to fix the problem, government documents show. They are Shands-Jacksonville, Florida Hospital System in Orlando, Miami's Jackson Health System, Memorial Regional in Hollywood and Orlando Regional. … This means too many of the Medicare patients they discharged were readmitted a few days or weeks later to the same or another hospital (Gentry, 6/17). 

The Miami Herald: Solution For Jackson Memorial May Be Found In Tampa
A task force of 20 Miami-Dade healthcare leaders has recommended that the financially troubled Jackson convert to a private nonprofit, a path taken by Tampa General and many other public hospitals across the nation over the past 20 years. The task force's 143-page report, set to go to the County Commission next month, urges commissioners to quickly create a nonprofit with the "independence, flexibility and nimbleness" to make sound economic decisions for Jackson, which has lost $337 million during the past two years. Many struggling public hospitals have prospered after freeing themselves from political controls and bureaucracy that some healthcare professionals believe are the cause of inefficient operations. Tampa General is one of them (Dorschner, 6/18). 

Modern Healthcare: N.Y. Hospital Can't Pay Its Workers
Sheehan Health Network, Buffalo, N.Y., cannot pay its employees, the 40-bed hospital told the New York State Department of Health. Jeffrey Hammond, a spokesman for the health department, said the agency "is aware of the situation and we are working with the facility to ensure patients are safe and receiving proper care." State health officials will continue to monitor the hospital, he said (Evans, 6/17). 

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