FORT WAYNE, Ind, (WANE) — In a full-page ad in Sunday’s Journal Gazette, Hoosiers for Affordable Healthcare asked Parkview Health to reduce their prices to the national average.
Parkview told WANE 15 they have lowered prices and the group used old data in its claim.
“Did you know…” the ad started, “Indiana’s non-profit hospital prices are the 5th highest in the U.S. according to Rand Corp and other studies.”
The ad praised IU Health.
“IU Health executives recognize that IU Health’s prices are too high and are taking a leadership role by announcing the hospital will reduce prices to the national average by 2025.”
The ad concluded by asking “Parkview Health… When will you follow IU Health’s lead and reduce your prices to the national average?”
In an email, Parkview detailed the steps it had taken.
“In 2020, we decreased overall prices by 12% and committed to a 0% increase in 2021,” said the email. “While our plans are not yet finalized, additional work is underway to further reduce prices in 2022 and beyond.”
“That’s something they should be heralding, they should be bragging about,” said Al Hubbard, Chairman of Hoosiers for Affordable Healthcare, who offered a first step to Parkview.
“Their average profit margin is 10%. The national average is 3%. They could immediately cut their profit margin to 3%.”
Hubbard cited data in the ad claiming Parkview holds over $2 billion in reserves and pays 24 executives over $500,000 a year.
“If they’re hiring people of that quality, those people should have the ability to get the prices down.”
In its email, Parkview dismissed Hubbard’s claims because they used old data.
“Hoosiers for Affordable Healthcare’s statements are largely based on outdated information and lack the context needed to fully understand the requirements of operating health systems.“
The health system did not offer new data.
Hubbard referred WANE 15 to his opinion piece earlier this year in the Wall Street Journal that “if we would get our prices down to the national average, it would increase the income of the average Hoosier family by 2,500 bucks a year. That’s not peanuts.”
Hubbard also said the ad served as a reminder that lawmakers in Indianapolis have put healthcare providers and insurers on notice to find a way to cut prices.
“They’re supposed to have the plan by April 1,” said Hubbard. “So that’s the purpose.”
Hubbard hoped the Statehouse would not be forced to act, calling legislation “not the Hoosier way.”
“We want you to voluntarily reduce your prices to the national average. There’s no justification for where your prices are today.”
Parkview believes that price transparency and affordability are important topics impacting our region and we are making strides to address both. Making high-quality healthcare more affordable is among our top priorities, and work is already underway. In 2020, we decreased overall prices by 12% and committed to a 0% increase in 2021. While our plans are not yet finalized, additional work is underway to further reduce prices in 2022 and beyond.
In addition to the work underway at Parkview, sustainable change will require that all stakeholders – including hospitals, insurance companies, drug companies and employers – work together to reduce costs and create value for patients. And these partnerships must be built on accurate and timely data.
Hoosiers for Affordable Healthcare’s statements are largely based on outdated information and lack the context needed to fully understand the requirements of operating health systems.– Full statement from Parkview Health