“These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.” Thomas Paine, 1776
Perhaps I’m being a bit dramatic as this isn’t the American Revolution, but our collective souls are being tried right now at Iowa Specialty Hospitals & Clinics. We are in the throes of the revolution of healthcare where only the strong will survive and as Paine said, some will shrink from service and disappear ... but those that will stay and fight, will prevail and win.
“Really, war talk?”
Ok, so here it is - the truth is that we are losing money this year. I’ve run hospitals for 25 years and I’ve never been in the red at the end of the year, until now. We can blame and shame each other and point to our right and left and say “they’re spending too much” or “they’re not working hard enough” (and everything has a grain of truth) BUT the market has changed. We are paid a lot less for doing the same thing as we used to be paid, and insurance in general has changed so that everybody has to meet huge deductibles before they can even receive care. So, as in war, we have to fight smarter.
We’ve made some changes over the past year - such as how we calculate PTO. Do you know that we (ISH) prior to the change, had the best (as in most rich) PTO package of any hospital around? And that we still have a better than average PTO package - even after the changes? We are going to try and have the best benefits possible and when we introduce things like wellness and HSA’s and other things to keep you healthy it’s to reduce the cost of health insurance. (The cost of insurance is high because we use it - no one is making money off of it.) When we turn on ourselves and blame each other - everyone loses. When we stand by each other and find ways to survive together, we prevail.
It is a war. Stand with me.