Category Archives: Health.Care

Will Scott privatize Florida hospitals? / Macclenny residents worry about their largest employer

Source: Brandon Larrabee, Florida Times Union, December 12, 2010

TALLAHASSEE – Despite fears that Gov.-elect Rick Scott might propose privatizing some state functions, several lawmakers said they haven’t heard what will happen to the state-run Northeast Florida State Hospital in Macclenny….

…The fate of the hospital was at the heart of a fierce battle in the 2009 session, when legislative leaders tried to push through a measure that would privatize the facility. They jettisoned the plan after running into opposition from the local community and some Republicans, particularly Sen. Charlie Dean, R-Inverness, and Rep. Janet Adkins, R-Fernandina Beach.

The measure was strongly backed by The GEO Group, a Boca Raton-based privatization giant that could have been one of the main contenders if the hospital were converted. GEO is also a major player in the debate over privatized prisons – a plan the Scott administration has not proposed but has also refused to rule out.

Scott tapped Donna Arduin, who once served on the board of a GEO spinoff and supported a privatization push in California, to head his budget advisory board.

Offshoring Professional Services: Institutions and Professional Control

Source: Kyoung-Hee Yu, Frank Levy, British Journal of Industrial Relations, Volume 48, Issue 4, December 2010
(subscription required)

From the abstract:
We examine the reasons why one might expect it to be more difficult to offshore professional work than manufacturing work in a globalized world. We then provide data on the variations in a specific case — the offshoring of diagnostic radiology from the USA, UK and Singapore. We show that existing theories on the ‘offshorability’ of jobs have not captured how national institutions and occupational regulations continue to define professional work. We then review the question of supply from India’s perspective and report that both macro-institutional and organizational contexts make it complicated for Indian doctors to supply much of this service.

Innovative Plan To Keep Yosemite Clinic Open

Source: Diana Marcum, California Healthline, December 06, 2010

The medical clinic in Yosemite National Park was never your average clinic. For instance, there was that time bears made themselves at home in the lunch room. In January, the clinic will pass another noteworthy milestone: It will become the first medical clinic in a national park to be operated by the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. It’s an unusual solution to a problem that threatened to leave the storied tourist draw without a clinic. Tenet — the Dallas-based investor-owned hospital company that’s owned the clinic since 1995 — has been losing money on the facility every year. Doctors Medical Center, a Tenet-owned hospital in Modesto, has been running the clinic as a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week outpatient center. It is leaving when its contract expires Dec. 31. No new takers stepped forward….

…The two agencies — Public Health Service and the National Park Service — will man the clinic together. The health service is providing doctors and nurses, and the park service is providing building maintenance and support staff. Corps doctors and nurses usually serve on American Indian reservations or remote areas where doctors are hard to find (think Dr. Joel Fleischman of the T.V. Show “Northern Exposure”). The doctors and nurses who will work in Yosemite’s clinic will wear uniforms and have military titles.
Related:
Public Health Service Commissioned Corps
“Yosemite National Park Selects Operator for Medical Clinic” news release
Socialized medicine comes to Yosemite

Kane’s mom-child health programs now private

Source: Susan Sarkauskas, Daily Herald, November 8, 2010

The Kane County Health Department transfers direct mother-child health-service programs to community clinics starting Tuesday. The transfer was mandated by the county board due to the state’s slow reimbursement to the county on these state-mandated services. The change affects about 6,000 mothers and children who are Medicaid-eligible.

Madison County CSEA union employees protest the possible sale of the Certified Home Health Agency

Source: By CAITLIN TRAYNOR, Dispatch (NY), Monday, November 08, 2010

 

The message to Madison County’s administration was clear: “Public health care is not for sale.”

Nearly 30 of the county’s CSEA union employees marched down the sidewalks surrounding the county building in protest of the potential sale and privatization of its Certified Home Health Agency. County officials began exploring their options after deficiencies in the home health care and long-term home health care services continued, coupled with financial loss.

Conversion drama / Florida systems get pushback on plans to go private

Source: Joe Carlson, Modern Healthcare, October 18, 2010 –

Running a publicly governed health system in Florida may be a difficult job, but as officials there are discovering, overcoming resistance to changing the business model is no easy task, either.

Two publicly run hospital systems are in the midst of changing from government-run organizations to other modes of governance, while 41 prominent business leaders in Miami are urging their ailing public system to do the same before it’s too late.

… At Broward Health, Paul-Hus announced last week that he wants to change the authorization the board gave to explore privatization after critics of the deal noted that the original announcement made the change seem like a sure thing–which it is not, Paul-Hus said.

…. And in Miami, the group of 41, made up of civic leaders, had an open letter published in a local newspaper urging Jackson Health System officials to reconsider their governance after a scathing report from a state investigative grand jury in August called the provider’s finances a “colossal mess” in large part because of a dysfunctional leadership structure.

Chicago’s Privatization Debate Hits The Public Health Department

Source: Micah Maidenberg, Progress Illinois,  Wednesday September 1st, 2010, 3:45pm

 

Legislation that would have given a department commissioner more power to contract out city services was averted at Chicago’s City Hall this morning. The Chicago City Council Committee on Health signed off on an ordinance allowing the commissioner of the Department of Public Health to strike contracts with a variety of organizations that provide midwife and pulmonary services through January 1, 2017.

 ……. What remains unclear is why the Daley Administration apparently sought broader contracting powers for the department when the mayor initially introduced the legislation on July 28. 

VA Home cutting staff / Jobs of nine local employees outsourced

Source: By William Kibler, Altoona Mirror, August 16, 2010

 

Dustan Rhodes is a 35-year-old veteran with Lou Gehrig’s disease who lives in the Hollidaysburg Veterans Home and needs to conserve energy, said occupational therapist assistant Joan Franks.

But against Franks’ advice, Rhodes took the trouble to tell the Mirror recently about the state’s intention to outsource all the work done by Franks and eight other employees in the physical and occupational therapy department.

…. A contract provision allows the state to outsource the work if it can realize “reasonable” cost savings, he said.

County closes sale on Lancaster Manor, will net $2.6M on the deal

Source: By ALGIS J. LAUKAITIS, Lincoln Journal Star (NE) Friday, August 13, 2010 1

The Lancaster County Board closed the deal Friday and sold Lancaster Manor to a Nebraska company established by Hunter Management of Evanston, Ill., for $9.5 million. The buyer is Lancaster Manor Real Estate, which now owns the land and assets of the nursing home at 1001 South St. Financing was arranged by American National Bank of Nebraska.

….. Kaspar and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 2468, and a grass-roots opposition group called Save the Manor Coalition, brought to light a litany of problems at nursing homes owned by the Rothner family in Illinois and other states.

State facilities for the disabled called antiquated, but some rely on them

Source: By Henri E. Cauvin, Washington Post (VA), Thursday, July 22, 2010

 

…….Across the country, states have been closing such places for years, moving people with mental disabilities into community homes and out of the institutions that defined care of the developmentally disabled for much of the 20th century.

…. Nationwide, the number of developmentally disabled people in institutions has been falling for decades as the country’s attitudes and laws have evolved. The shift culminated in a 1999 Supreme Court decision that said “confinement in an institution severely diminishes the everyday life activities of individuals.”

Although several states have closed all of their large institutions, most still operate some. The number they house has fallen to about 33,000, from 186,743 in 1970 and 84,239 in 1990, according to the Research and Training Center on Community Living at the University of Minnesota.