Monday, October 17, 2011
In related articles on hospitals' tax exemptions appearing recently in the Des Moines Register, U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley adds to his track record of seeking greater accountability of tax-exempt nonprofits, specifically nonprofit hospitals. As one article highlights Grassley's efforts towards greater transparent reporting by tax-exempt hospitals, most of which was enacted as part of the Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act of 2010 (see prior posts here and here), it also reveals Grassley's apparently unabandoned effort to impose a definite charity care standard on such hospitals (see prior post here). Noting that tax-exempt charities classed as private foundations are subject to mandatory payout rules, the Senator opined that a similar rule could be imposed on hospitals, but declined to set the required level of such a payout requirement. Grassley does view Medicaid reimbursement shortfalls as one of the components of a hospital's charity care provisions. The article does point out that a set percentage of charity care would adversely affect smaller, more rural hospitals with varying amounts of uninsured and underinsured patients.
In another article, Senator Grassley discussed that his "skepticism" of nonprofit hospitals is only increased in light of reports detailing certain hospital executives' large compensation packages.