To examine relationships between penalties assessed by Medicare's Hospital Readmission Reduction Program and Value‐Based Purchasing Program and hospital financial condition.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, American Hospital Association, and Area Health Resource File data for 4,824 hospital‐year observations.
Bivariate and multivariate analysis of pooled cross‐sectional data.
Safety net hospitals have significantly higher / penalties, but, unlike nonsafety net hospitals, increases in their penalty rate did not significantly affect their total margins.
Safety net hospitals appear to rely on nonpatient care revenues to offset higher penalties for the years studied. While reassuring, these funding streams are volatile and may not be able to compensate for cumulative losses over time.
Data Sources/Study Setting