The Ritz Herald
Columbia University Medical Center at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital in NYC. © Ben Hider

Healthcare Spending Declines 43% for Hospitals During Pandemic

Already in the first half of 2020, there have been 12 rural hospital closures

Published on September 22, 2020

QuoteWizard®, a LendingTree company, and one of the nation’s leading online insurance marketplaces released a report on healthcare spending during the pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic has seen a significant shift in how hospitals and health care facilities operate due to an influx of patients coming in to be treated for COVID-19 and an even larger number of people avoiding regular and planned visits because of the elevated risks for contracting COVID-19.

With the billions in losses that hospitals and health care facilities are facing could lead to a number of unfavorable results for the American people. Hospitals’ ability to stay operational is one initial issue that sticks out. Many hospitals with mounting debts are simply unable to continue operating and are forced to close their doors. Hospital closures are becoming more common, especially in rural areas where health care facilities are few and far between. Already in the first half of 2020, there have been 12 rural hospital closures.

Key Findings:

  • Healthcare spending in April dropped for hospitals (-43%), and physician offices (-37%).
  • There was a 77.87% decrease in in-person medical visits from March to April 2020 compared to the same period in 2019.
  • The AHA projects health care system losses of $120.5 billion from July through December 2020, totaling $323.1 billion in losses for 2020.
  • Over the course of 2020, primary care practices are expected to lose $67,774 per full-time-equivalent physician. The estimated cost to neutralize this revenue loss nationally would be $15.1 billion.

QuoteWizard analyzed State Health Access Data Assistance Center to determine which states rank the highest average employer health insurance premiums, and Kaiser Family Foundation data on states with the highest hospital expenses per visit

States with already high hospital expenses and health insurance premiums could see even higher rates impacting their bottom line over the next decade. Given the projected hospital debts, these states are likely to see the largest increase given the expected high rate of growth.

Associate Writer