by John R. Fischer
, Senior Reporter | July 07, 2020
The majority (67%) said that volume would not return to baseline in 2020. Experts suggest that the pandemic could continue for at least another 12 months, prompting the AHA to estimate a return to baseline patient volume by July 2021.
Uncertainty around the total amount of losses stems from increasing case rates in certain states, the potential for subsequent surges and associated COVID-19 treatment costs later in the year, and changing trends in insurance coverage as a result of an economic downturn, all of which are not accounted for in the report. It also does not factor in increased acquisition costs for drugs, non-PPE supplies and equipment, and the long-term effects of the pandemic beyond 2020.
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“Hospitals and health systems are in the midst of the greatest financial crisis in our history, as we continue to fight this pandemic at the same time that non-COVID patient visits remain down,” said AHA president and CEO Rick Pollack in a statement. “While we appreciate the support to date from Congress and the administration, this report clearly shows that we are not out of the woods. More action is needed urgently to support our nation’s hospitals and health systems and front-line staff.”
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