KentuckyOne Health lost $134 million over nine-month period - WDRB 41 Louisville News

KentuckyOne Health lost $134 million over nine-month period

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) - KentuckyOne Health lost $134 million on operations during the nine months ended March 31, according to the latest financial report from parent company Catholic Health Initiatives.

The report, dated June 20, shows continuing challenges for KentuckyOne, a statewide non-profit healthcare provider that includes Jewish Hospital & St. Mary's Healthcare and most of University Hospital and the James Graham Brown Cancer Center.

In March, CHI reported that its Kentucky region – or, KentuckyOne Health – had lost nearly $100 million during the six months ended Dec. 31, 2013.

Nonetheless, KentuckyOne says it remains on track to improve its financial performance by $218 million by July 2015 – the goal chief executive officer Ruth Brinkley cited when KentuckyOne laid off about 500 employees in February.

KentuckyOne is "about half of the way" toward the $218 million goal thanks to "our consolidation efforts and continuous monitoring of our expenses across the system," spokesman David McArthur said in a prepared statement.

Formed in 2012, KentuckyOne Health includes the Louisville-based Jewish Hospital & St. Mary's HealthCare; the Lexington-based Saint Joseph Health System; and essentially all of University Hospital and the James Graham Brown Cancer Center through a long-term partnership with the University of Louisville.

With about $2 billion in annual revenue, KentuckyOne is the single-biggest of 11 regional healthcare systems within Denver-based CHI. KentuckyOne contributes about 16 percent of CHI's revenue, according to the latest report.

KentuckyOne's challenges include "decreasing patient volumes, physician retention issues and shifts in payer mix," according to the report.

"Payer mix" refers to the percentage of patients paying through insurance, rather than out-of-pocket, and the sources of coverage, whether from government programs like Medicaid or commercial insurance.

Earlier this month, University Hospital President Ken Marshall told a Metro Council committee that the implementation of the Affordable Care Act had led to a significant drop in the number of uninsured patients at University Hospital, the region's safety-net hospital for the poor.

But, University is only one piece of the statewide KentuckyOne system.

Asked to elaborate on the "payer mix" issues KentuckyOne is experiencing, McArthur said: "Shifts in payer mix varies by markets in Kentucky, and could include variables such as patients' insurance coverage paying less (or reimbursing less) than it used to for care."

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