HSCRCHealth Services Cost Review Commission (Maryland)
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For most categories, hospitals are asked to report their staff hours, number of "encounters," direct costs, and indirect costs (using rates calculated by the HSCRC based on each hospital's financial report).
The reporting requirement began with fiscal year 2004, and hospital reports for all years are available on the HSCRC Web site, (3) along with summary reports for each year prepared by HSCRC staff.
ZIP code information regarding the number and location of these trauma centers was obtained from records at the HSCRC and the Maryland Institute for Emergency Medical Services Systems.
Working together, the HSCRC and Maryland's hospitals have successfully slowed the rate of increase in hospital costs that Maryland residents must pay.
Management attributes the profitability increase to higher patient volumes with an increased case-mix severity index, one-time rate increase from HSCRC, coupled with cost savings and revenue cycle enhancement measures.
Additionally, Fitch views the presence of Maryland's HSCRC as providing a great degree of stability, although it also limits JHHS's ability to raise hospital rates.
Key credit strengths include strong operating performance and utilization trends, the recent completion of major capital projects, and the stability provided by the HSCRC.
Dianne Feeney, BSN, MS, associate director of quality initiatives for the HSCRC, explains the strategic planning, analytics and infrastructure behind Maryland's initiative to incent hospitals to improve readmission rates on a risk-adjusted basis.
The Stable Outlook reflects the benefits expected to be derived from AAHS's capital plan, and the likely continuation of adequate reimbursement rates set by the HSCRC.
Nonetheless, the rate stability engendered by the HSCRC remains a credit strength.
The Stable Outlook reflects AAHS' recent strategic affiliation with Johns Hopkins Health System (JHHS; revenue bonds rated 'AA-' by Fitch), the benefits expected to be derived from AAHS' capital plan, and the likely continuation of adequate reimbursement rates set by the HSCRC.
Reimbursement rate increases, which are regulated for all payors by the HSCRC, have been adequate, ranging from 3.