Pearl River County Hospital Press Release -- Response to Navigant Report
Pearl River County Hospital
Press Release in response Navigant Report
Poplarville, MS--The Navigant report on Rural Hospital Stability was released in February 2019. The report identifies 430 hospitals across the nation and 31 in Mississippi that could be at risk of closing unless their financial situation improves. The report identified Pearl River County Hospital (PRCH) as one of the hospitals at risk.
The data used for the report comprised a 3-year period and included total operating margin, day’s cash on hand, and debt-to-capitalization ratio. Other factors impacting the rural hospital situation include low population growth, shifts in insurance coverages, excess beds due to the shift toward outpatient care and inability to leverage technology due to capital constraints.
While nearly every hospital in the United States has experienced challenges in financial performance, Mississippi hospitals have been hit hard, in large part due to not expanding Medicaid and reductions in subsidies for concentrated Medicaid and Non-insured populations. Health care has been chaotic for years, even well before the passage of the Affordable Care Act. Patients and providers are at the mercy of the insurance companies and the government to pay timely.
As the report clearly outlines, many hospitals have struggled financially. PRCH has had its share of difficulties, most notably being the previous administration’s billing errors. These errors resulted in the hospital having to reimburse CMS several million dollars through monthly deductions from Medicare payments to the hospital, which has had a severe impact on cash flow.
Pearl River County Hospital provides vital services to Pearl River Countians. Our emergency services have saved many lives. Over the last few years we have made available many new services and providers to serve our county.
PRCH has taken many of the steps outlined in the report to enhance our financial outlook. Some examples are using telemedicine for access to specialists, negotiating better contracts, managing productivity, eliminating financially non-viable service lines and seeking out other more profitable and value-added services to offer our community. We are blessed to have a smart, capable workforce that cares deeply about our hospital and community. We are amazed every day by the compassion and innovative spirit that will continue to ensure our availability to serve Pearl River County.
The Pearl River County Hospital’s Board of Trustees, along with the hospital’s committed employees and providers, is steadfast in its resolve to maintain the hospital.