The return on investment, or ROI, is about the bottom line – are you making money in your business? When will you start seeing returns that bring profits to the company? But when it comes to the return on investment in healthcare, it should be about the patient experience.
What Is the Return on Investment in Healthcare?
While hospitals and clinics are still businesses, the patient should always come first. Patient care is vital to caring for those in need. Of course, this can often clash with the need to make money. But when you invest in the healthcare business, the focus should absolutely be on patient care.
For example, the return on investment in healthcare is about:
- Did the patient leave with a lasting solution to their ailment?
- Was the patient comfortable and cared for while in the facility?
- Was the patient educated on continuing care?
- Did the patient stay as long as required for proper recovery?
- Did the patient get help in a timely manner?
- Was the patient fed, bathed, and able to sleep?
While some companies may argue that there is money to be saved in healthcare practices, the patient’s comfort and care should be a priority. If you feel like you are being rushed in and out of doctor’s appointments or post-operation appointments, you may not have the opportunity to address a vital medical concern. Do not let the return on investment in healthcare undermine your quality of care.
How Healthcare Companies Cut Costs at the Patient’s Expense
What does that mean when a hospital or doctor’s office is trying to cut costs? It may very well mean that your care is no longer offered at a high quality. Hospitals may be owned by venture capital companies trying to turn a profit in as little time as possible.
The unethical practices for a higher return on investment in healthcare can end up hurting you in the long run. So stay informed about possible corrupt practices for cutting costs, and speak up if you feel any of these situations are happening to you.
1. 15-Minute Slots for an Appointment: Have you ever been rushed in and out of a doctor’s appointment, unable to ask your questions? Whether discussing possible treatments for a condition or wanting a professional opinion on caring for your baby, 15 minutes is not enough time to get through all of your concerns.
From the business perspective, the office will make the most money as they see more patients each day. Your insurance pays the same fee for a 15- or 30-minute appointment. Learn to advocate for yourself to ensure you get the answers to all of your questions.
2. Cutting Down Support Staff: A medical facility may cut down on the support staff in order to save money here and there. For example, the administrator who processes patient requests or insurance paperwork may take a cut in hours. Then the patient has to wait longer to get medical records to their child’s school or medical clearance for a job specialty.
A patient may also suffer by not getting insurance pre-approval before surgery or treatment and pushing back the much-needed operation until admin catches up. These inconveniences can directly affect your health.
3. Budget Cuts on Materials and Equipment: Perhaps a healthcare facility chooses to take cuts on obtaining the latest equipment for the hospital. This means that your provider may not offer the newest technologies to deliver you the best care.
What happens if your office does not have the necessary personal protective equipment for the medical professionals when an emergency occurs? Doctors and nurses might be less likely to put their lives on the line if the hospital did not invest in the materials to keep them safe.
4. Forcing Smaller Spaces: Do you notice that hospital rooms keep getting smaller and smaller? What about the number of beds that are allowed in an ER? Smaller areas in hospitals and clinics can contribute to the spreading of infectious illnesses. In addition, close encounters when patients are contagious can be a dangerous risk.
While it may be sensible from the business perspective to invest in smaller real estate, it comes at increased risk to the patients. If your hospital or doctor’s office is not focused on the health of its patients, contact a lawyer today.
5. Understaffing Essential Medical Personnel: A news report from New Jersey revealed that anesthesiologists were purposely understaffed to save money. Once an investigation revealed that the staffing company was part-owned by venture capitalists, litigation ensued.
This is not the only case of ulterior motives when it comes to understaffing in hospitals. Consider waiting in a hospital for a nurse to answer your call and if that is the result of staffing issues. Or if you suffer pain during childbirth because the anesthesiologist couldn’t make it to your room in time. Is this the result of hectic times or intentional understaffing to save money?
6. Rushing Hospital Checkout: Another instance that could occur is the hospital rushing you to check out in order to free up a bed for another patient. The more patients they can see, the more money they make, right? What could happen if you were to go home before your body is ready?
You may suffer an unsupervised reaction to anesthesia or an increase in bleeding due to walking around and stepping back into your routine too early after surgery. These problems can be avoided and are often due to money motivation.
Learn about the intention of your hospital as a business and if they are motivated by cutting costs at the patient expense. Then, when you hire a trusted law firm, you can fight for your patient’s rights.
Contact Wormington & Bollinger
Do you suspect that your patient care was negligent due to saving money on the hospital’s part? Do something about it by calling Wormington & Bollinger. We can advocate for your needs and ensure that your health comes first. For more information, contact us today.