updated 12/22/2010 3:46:12 PM ET 2010-12-22T20:46:12

Dec. 31st Deadline Limits Patient Choice and Encourages Business as Usual

WASHINGTON, Dec. 22, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In 10 days, thousands of workers will put down their tools and halt construction at 45 hospitals across the country, simply because the hospitals have physician owners.

"This deadline is unrealistic to the communities these hospitals would serve," says Physician Hospitals of America (PHA) Executive Director Keri Bolte. "When healthcare reform passed, we were given eight months to finish ongoing projects, even though hospital development takes years to complete. This deadline robs communities of good care and good jobs."

"Limiting access to top rated hospitals is not 'reform' -- it is business as usual," says Michael Russell, MD, PHA president. "Physician owned hospitals are under attack because of their successful patient outcomes, which forces other hospitals to improve to stay competitive. This law limits competition which consequently drives down quality of care."

To understand the quality of patient care that is in jeopardy, one only needs to look at the government's own quality rankings – the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS).  There are 275 physician owned hospitals in 35 states, compared with more than 5700 hospitals nationwide, and physician owned hospitals rank as the #1 hospital in 19 states.

President Obama says that "consumers do better when there is choice and competition."  However, this deadline limits both. In the next Congress, PHA and its partners will fight to reverse this legislation that limits patient choice.

PHA believes that patients benefit when physicians are directly involved in every aspect of the delivery of healthcare. Physician ownership of hospitals ensures the provision of high quality, efficient care and should be the model for integrated health systems in the future.

Physician Hospitals of America (PHA) is the national trade association representing more than 275 physician owned hospitals in 35 states owned and operated by physicians.  Based on federal government surveys, physician owned hospitals consistently rank high in both quality and patient satisfaction.  For more information visit:  www.physicianhospitals.org .

Contact:

Leslie Fossey           

(903)539‐7712 /  leslie@azaleaortho.com

Keri Bolte

 (312) 961-4745 /  keri@physicianhospitals.org

This information was brought to you by Cision http://www.cisionwire.com

http://www.cisionwire.com/cco-partners/new-year-s-eve-deadline-in-healthcare-reform-to-stop-construction-at-45-hospitals69433

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