10+ Year Member
- Feb 12, 2007
- Attending Physician
I keep reading about this, for example in the WSJ a few days ago about Gov. Jindal's Louisiana paying a "...fixed per-patient amount, adjusted for health risks."
How does a program like this affect pathology?
Pathology is already affected by fixed-rate compensation for services (inpatient and some outpatient categories). Hospitals receive a certain amount of money for inpatient admissions based on the diagnostic category, this amount will be the same if the patient stays 5 days or 15 days, whether they have 20 tests or 2000 tests. Pathology can bill for tests that are done but it is basically just to fight for a piece of the general reimbursement that goes to the hospital, and "prove" that the department deserves it. Stuff like this proposal above probably affects pathology less significantly than other fields, but anything that hurts reimbursement in general will hurt pathology.