Welcome to Obamacare

Dear Editor:The waves of change are stormily coming on the horizon across the healthcare spectrum, with greater layoffs and tightening of budgets across hospitals already taking place throughout Southern California. While the idea that "affordable" healthcare should be a universal right for everyone as supporters of Obamacare hailed when it was approved by Congress, the grim realities for hospitals across the nation are quite alarming. With already declined reimbursements for patient care costs across the board, stand-alone hospitals are becoming a thing of the past. Unless little hospitals get acquired by large, more financially solvent health systems and massive restructuring takes place, old business models based on top heavy administrations and large overheads that include excessive FTEs will not survive. Even larger healthcare systems are restructuring and looking at their business plans to ensure their sustainability, profitability and long term existence. The business model for today, tomorrow and every day thereafter for hospitals is to be "lean and mean," financially speaking; and yes, do more with less -- a lot less -- while maintaining top level quality of care for patients. Welcome to Obamacare! Claudia Marroquin-Frometa Downey

********** Published: July 4, 2013 - Volume 12 - Issue 12