5 must-reads for hospital CFOs this week

Here are five articles published on Becker's Hospital Review this past week that offer insight on health system cost-cutting efforts, hospital closures and patient loan programs.

1. 3 obvious and not-so-obvious reasons hospitals close
Hospitals across the nation face a myriad of challenges, such as underpayments from Medicare and Medicaid and, in certain markets, declining patient volumes. As hospitals weather these issues, what factors cause one hospital to close its doors while another continues operations unscathed?

2. Here's why so many health systems see their cost-cutting efforts fail before they even start
As the healthcare industry migrates toward a value-based payment system, with risk-based models like bundled payments gaining speed, it is vital for hospitals and health systems to reduce costs. However, that process is difficult when organizations don't know what their costs are.

3. Harvard study finds consumer price shopping doesn't lower healthcare costs
If consumers could compare healthcare prices, would they choose the lower option? A recent study published in JAMA suggests not.

4. Beating the self-pay problem: How 3 hospitals developed patient loan programs
Hospitals and health systems are looking for creative ways to tackle a thorny and growing problem: how to collect self-pay accounts associated with a growing number of high-deductible health plans.

5. How CHS, Tenet, UHS, LifePoint and HCA fared in Q1
Major for-profit hospital operators produced mixed results in the first quarter of 2016.

More articles on healthcare finance:

5 health systems with strong finances
AHA weighs in on CMS' proposed drug payment model
Hurt by EHR costs, Allegheny Health Network posts $17.8M operating loss

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