Regulators trim hospital rate increase

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(Host) State regulators have trimmed the rate increases sought by Vermont hospitals to an average of 6.6%.

Michael Davis analyzed the budgets for the Department of Banking, Insurance, Securities, and Health care Administration.

He says hospital inflation is around 4.4%, so that accounted for much of the budget increases.

(Davis) “Besides the inflation factor, you also have the increased utilization that’s in the system. And what that means – more services, more people coming through the door. So we saw some additional dollars there as well.”

(Host) The fourteen hospitals undergo an annual budget review by the state’s Public Oversight Commission. Davis says the state looks at both hospital rates and revenues in setting final budget numbers.

Overall, the state lowered rates for seven of the fourteen institutions.

Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington saw its rates cut from an 8% increase to 7.5%.

The Rutland Regional Medical Center was cut from 6% to 5.25%.

And Southwestern Vermont Medical center in Bennington got the biggest rate reduction – from 8.5% to 7%.

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