You would think that a hospital that takes federal tax dollars to help low-income patients with drug costs would actually help low-income patients more than Hospitals that do not take those funds.

You would be wrong.

A paper published by the Pacific Research Institute titled “Profiting from 340B; A Review of Charity Care and Financial Performance at 340B Hospitals” pointed out the differences.  The Michigan Capitol Confidential news site reported on this paper. The stated:

“The 340B government program is designed to assist patients not eligible for Medicaid or Medicare but still are low income and help pay for prescription medications. Hospitals call this charity care which means they do not expect to be reimbursed for services. This is different than when hospitals expect to be paid for healthcare provided but are unable to collect.”

The hospitals the report looked at are operating across eight states, they are Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.  

There are 4 hospitals in Michigan in that report are:

  1. Mid-Michigan Medical Center in Midland Michigan 
  2. Covenant Medical Center in Saginaw Michigan 
  3. Munson Medical Center in Traverse City Michigan
  4. William Beaumont Hospital in Southfield 

The Pacific Research study found that all hospitals as a group spent 2.03% of their patient revenue on charity care while the 340B hospitals only spent 1.66%.  

Mid-Michigan Medical Center’s in 2018 devoted .22% of its net patient revenue to charity care. 

Covenant Medical Center’s spent .09% of its net patient revenue on charity care. 

Munson Medical Center’s in 2019 spent .20 percent of net patient revenue on charity care. 

William Beaumont Hospital’s .53% of net patient revenue to charity care.

The author of the paper, Wayne Winegarden, said:

“Despite the program's mission, 340B hospitals are providing less charity care than non-340B hospitals, yet have higher average profitability. This general pattern reflects 340B hospitals in Michigan as well. These outcomes provide additional evidence in favor of fundamental programmatic reforms to reign in the program's many excesses."

Looks to me like another government program that is making some wealthy, wasting our money and should be canceled.

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