Share7TweetShareEmail7 Shares“Selly Oak Hospital – Raddlebarn Road – sign – H Hospital” by Elliot BrownApril 3, 2017; WWL-TV and Greater Baton Rouge Business ReportAbout five years ago, Louisiana began a public-private program with its charity hospital system. The system, which was in financial trouble, was transitioned to a mix of for-profit and nonprofit private hospitals and corporations. A recent impact analysis of Louisiana’s privatization of its public health system has declared the project a resounding success, saving the state $2.7 billion over the four-year period between 2013 and 2016.The study estimates the financial impact of the privatization. First, it estimates the revenues raised for the state from leases of buildings and equipment to private hospitals and doctors. Then, the author adds in federal matching funds. Finally, the author adds monies provided for capital improvements that the private groups bear, rather than the state.The study then performs a series of exercises (read: homework problems) to estimate the spillover effects of these monies into the rest of the Louisiana economy. The study estimates an impressive 17,500 jobs added as a result of the state, splitting the new revenues 50/50 between health and education expenditures. Additionally, the study estimates $1.7 billion in additional sales in 2016.Now, these estimates are based on a number of assumptions, some more justifiable than others, but on net, these spillover/multiplier estimates are likely an overstatement. Without getting too far into the weeds, the assumption of an even 50/50 split of 100 percent of the revenues is very optimistic. However, that is not the biggest takeaway of this study.What should be noted is that Louisiana has found a way to privatize its hospital system, which was one of the few remaining state-run systems in the U.S. With this privatization naturally come a few concerns. Are more people left without healthcare as a result of the privatization? What happens to the cost of healthcare in these formerly state-run institutions? What about the quality of care? Will private hospitals care for their patients in the same way?Luckily, the public-private hospital ownership question has been among the most studied in the economics field. Unfortunately, the results of these studies have been mixed, although many empirical studies tend to lean toward private hospitals being an improvement in many ways over state-run hospitals, although the degree of competition can affect the quality of care and amount of uncompensated care—i.e., care for patients who cannot pay all or part of their hospital bills. The good news for patients of nonprofits is that nonprofit hospitals may compete over quality of care, leading to high levels of care in areas with competing nonprofit hospitals.The study aims to measure the “improved care” now available thanks to privatization of the state’s health system. Unfortunately, it is not nearly rigorous enough to draw any solid conclusions about the care now being received by these would-be patients of the state. There is reason to be optimistic, however. It will be interesting to see how the healthcare system evolves and revenues change over time. Four years in is far too early to declare victory, but it is off to a good start.—Sean WattersonShare7TweetShareEmail7 Shares
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, (CMC) – The last batch of West Indies players left the Caribbean on Tuesday to join their teammates in India, ahead of the limited overs series against Afghanistan set to bowl off next week.Players and management began leaving last Sunday for the tour that includes three Twenty20 Internationals, three One-Day Internationals and a one-off Test, and the entire squad is expected to be assembled in the northern India city of Lucknow by today.Test players, like off-spinning all-rounder Rahkeem Cornwall, will join the side later next month after representing his native Leeward Islands Hurricanes in the Regional Super50, with the Test set to begin bowl off November 27.The Super50 runs from November 6 to December 1 in Trinidad and St Kitts.West Indies will face a tough challenge against the Afghans, especially with the series being played on subcontinent “home turf”.`The Caribbean side beat their hosts in their last meeting during the ICC World Cup in England earlier this year but it was only the second time in six ODIs they had registered a win over their opponents.Afghanistan drew a three-match series in the Caribbean two years ago but then twice trounced the Windies during the ICC World Cup qualifiers in Zimbabwe last year.West Indies have been more dominant in the T20 format, however, beating Afghanistan in three of four matches.The two sides have never met in a Test.Afghanistan, meanwhile, have quietly assembled for the tour, with captain Rashid Khan the last player to arrive from United Arab Emirates on Tuesday.And team manager Mohammad Nazeem Jaar said the hosts were well prepared for the challenge presented by West Indies.“There has been a lot of change in the mentality of the team since the World Cup in July and we are hoping for a good series here,” he said.“West Indies have been a good side, but we are ready to challenge them on home turf. We had our cricket at Noida and then Dehradun, but Lucknow is altogether a different place.”Afghanistan were only awarded Test status two years ago and bagged their first win last month when they stunned Bangladesh in Chittagong.Like West Indies, they have undergone a change of coach with former South Africa all-rounder Lance Klusener taking over after Phil Simmons stepped down following the World Cup.Ironically Simmons, a former Test batsman, has now taken up the head coach role with West Indies.The tourists will play a warm-up match next Tuesday before facing Afghanistan in the opening ODI two days later.