Interview Synopsis

COVID-19 – impact on the US hospital system – part 2

  • Multi Asset
  • Healthcare
  • North America

US hospitals are under pressure from COVID-19. There has been “a massive compression on select types of services and admissions that have foreseen fiscal issues across the board,” in addition to layoffs, as told to Third Bridge Forum by a former senior executive at Tenet Healthcare Corp.

An uneasy outlook for the US hospital sector in the wake of COVID-19

He outlined other key trends and themes affecting the hospital sector at present, including the fact that reimbursement isn’t reflecting resource intensity. “You have more nursing, you have more imaging, you have heavily increased costs with environmental services and essential sterilisation after using equipment.” This is compounded by staff becoming sick and thereby increasing the need for locum tenens.

The Interview moved onto looking at how revenue will be impacted, including what the fixed and variable costs are. Elective surgeries have been “squashed”, with the majority cancelled, and only those taking place where delaying would lead to complications.

Bankruptcies and reorganisations could be on the cards. It also “seems logical” that companies would look for consolidation opportunities. However, this might not be a positive step, as studies “show as they get bigger, they actually don’t get more efficient, but the natural inclination is for them to try to do that.”

In the longer term, the specialist believes the pandemic could affect how care is delivered, including the practice of shared rooms and whether beds need to be reconfigured. Moreover, many hospitals will reassess their operating structure.

To access all the human insights from Third Bridge Forum’s Interview, COVID-19 – Impact on the US Hospital System – Part 2, click here to view the full transcript.


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