It is so great to be a nonprofit hospital. First, you get to say you are a nonprofit, which gives off the connotation that you are not making money. It rolls off the lips of the hospital CEOs so easily because they are doing so much good. Heck, it’s kind of like a charity, right? Don’t believe it. In a Washington Post piece, it as found that:
“The value of tax breaks for nonprofit hospitals has doubled over the course of the past decade, new research shows.” In 2011, hospitals received $24.6 billion in “Federal, state and local” tax exemptions, compared to $12.6 billion in 2002.
Yes, that is billions of dollars, folks. Now get this, Modern Healthcare reports that despite the doubling in the value of tax breaks, the majority “of those funds aren’t being spent on improving community health,” according to the study recently published online in the journal Health Affairs. The study found that in 2011, “tax-exempt hospitals…provided $62.4 billion in community benefits,” only eight percent of which “supported ways to improve community health.” The remaining 92 percent “encompassed charity care for indigent patients, Medicaid payment shortfalls, research and training.”
In other words, they are getting paid for their charity care and Medicaid care. I am confused, how do you define charity again? And the Medicaid patients are the same ones they cry about when stating they are supposedly losing money. If they are losing so much money, why are the CEOs paid ridiculous salaries? Why are there cranes at every one of these hospitals working on new building projects? This is why hospitals support Medicaid expansion. They are raking it in all under the guise of nonprofit.