Obamacare Confusion Sends Hospital Admissions To Lowest On Record

Tyler Durden's picture

Only 5% of hospitals in American saw year-over-year growth in overall admissions in November, according to Citi. This is the weakest inpatient admission rate on record and comes amid both doctor and patient uncertainty over the Obamacare changes. As Citi's Gary Taylor notes "the paralyzing effect of the impotent Obamacare rollout" and Medicare's new "two-midnight" rule will weigh notably on hospital earnings as doctor's employment and compensation modesl remain in flux. 13 days to go...

Citi's survey drops to record low...

Only 5% of responders cited yty growth in overall admissions. This result is the weakest in the 11-year history of our survey and compares to a revised 22% in October, 37% in September and 24% in August.

 

And the survey has tended to be predictive of reality...

 

Via Reuters,

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New billing rules for the Medicare program for the elderly and disabled require hospitals to treat patient stays lasting less than "two midnights" as an outpatient visit.

 

"In addition, it is reasonable to conclude that the cumulative impact of changing physician employment and payment models is beginning to play a role, as well as the paralyzing effect of the impotent Obamacare rollout," Citi analyst Gary Taylor said in a report.

 

Hospital inpatient admissions in November fell to their weakest level in more than a decade, based on responses to the bank's monthly survey of 98 hospitals, Taylor said.

 

In October and November combined, admissions were down 4 to 5 percent from a year ago, which will likely weigh on hospital operators' fourth-quarter earnings and 2014 forecasts, he said.