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Charlotte Amalie
Wednesday, July 6, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesHOSPITALS DO WELL ON THEIR OWN, DELEGATE SAYS

HOSPITALS DO WELL ON THEIR OWN, DELEGATE SAYS

Self-management is working for the territory's hospitals, according to Delegate Donna Christian-Christensen. Since semi-autonomy was granted the V.I. Hospitals Corp. last year, she told members of the St. John Rotary Club on Friday at the Westin Resort, revenues have risen, vendors are receiving more timely payment, and most medications are in stock.
Christensen, who is also a physician, said she has held several meetings with hospital officials on St. Thomas and St. Croix since the conversion from government operation. Overall, "they have done well," she said.
On the legislative agenda she presented at the meeting, Christensen included the collection of Medicaid payments due from Washington to the hospitals corporation and the Health Department. The securing of these funds, she said, would contribute greatly to the delivery of quality health care.
Because of a federal cap on Medicaid for the Virgin Islands and the failure of the V.I. government to make required matching payments, $25 million in uncollected funds has piled up in the last five years, she said.
Medicaid patients and uninsured patients make up 60 percent of the people treated at the territory's hospitals, Christensen said, leaving hospitals unable to collect for services in some cases and getting fifty cents on the dollar for services rendered because of the Medicaid cap.
But in spite of this fiscal handicap, Christiansen said, hospital executives have streamlined the delivery of medical care under semi-autonomy. "A lot of times we don't have faith in ourselves to be able to make the necessary changes, to govern, to manage, to administer programs," she said. "But I think the hospitals are a good example of what can happen when we are given the tools to do the job."

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Self-management is working for the territory's hospitals, according to Delegate Donna Christian-Christensen. Since semi-autonomy was granted the V.I. Hospitals Corp. last year, she told members of the St. John Rotary Club on Friday at the Westin Resort, revenues have risen, vendors are receiving more timely payment, and most medications are in stock.
Christensen, who is also a physician, said she has held several meetings with hospital officials on St. Thomas and St. Croix since the conversion from government operation. Overall, "they have done well," she said.
On the legislative agenda she presented at the meeting, Christensen included the collection of Medicaid payments due from Washington to the hospitals corporation and the Health Department. The securing of these funds, she said, would contribute greatly to the delivery of quality health care.
Because of a federal cap on Medicaid for the Virgin Islands and the failure of the V.I. government to make required matching payments, $25 million in uncollected funds has piled up in the last five years, she said.
Medicaid patients and uninsured patients make up 60 percent of the people treated at the territory's hospitals, Christensen said, leaving hospitals unable to collect for services in some cases and getting fifty cents on the dollar for services rendered because of the Medicaid cap.
But in spite of this fiscal handicap, Christiansen said, hospital executives have streamlined the delivery of medical care under semi-autonomy. "A lot of times we don't have faith in ourselves to be able to make the necessary changes, to govern, to manage, to administer programs," she said. "But I think the hospitals are a good example of what can happen when we are given the tools to do the job."