Medical costs in Michigan hospitals ranked 6.5 percent below the national average in fiscal year 2012, says a report released today by the Michigan Health and Hospital Association in Lansing. In addition, the average operating margin in the state was 3.4 percent, compared to the national average of 6.5 percent.
“Hospitals are making a significant effort to care for patients, residents, and communities throughout the state by improving care, reaching out to the chronically ill, preventing readmissions, and eliminating inefficiencies,” says Spencer Johnson, president of the association, which represents nearly 170 hospitals, health systems, and other health care providers in the state.
While keeping costs down, Michigan hospitals provided nearly $2.8 billion in community benefits to residents. This included more than $141 million in community health improvement services — such as immunizations, clinics, free/discounted prescriptions and counseling, health professions education, research, and financial and in-kind contributions — and nearly $2 billion in unpaid and uncompensated patient care.
In an effort to further reduce costs for the state’s hospitals, many are educating their patients about programs such as the Healthy Michigan Plan, which provides health coverage to qualified, low-income residents. If the plan is adequately funded in the state’s 2015 budget, it will eventually extend coverage to more than 450,000 uninsured, working adults, Johnson says. Today, about 1.2 million Michiganders do not have health coverage.
“Hospitals, physicians, and other health care partners are working hand-in-hand to make a difference in the health and well-being of state residents, and our elected officials play a critical role in helping Michigan sustain and enhance its role as a national leader in health care,” Johnson says.
To read the full report, called Michigan Hospitals: Prepared to Care, click here.