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Can Medicaid Be Profitable Under Healthcare Reform?

Under healthcare reform provisions, the number of Medicaid patients is expected to swell dramatically. And, according to Becker’s ASC Review, ambulatory surgery center’s (ASC) that operate efficiently could take advantage of this.

Many practices provide charity health care to patients who have no insurance coverage. But with the addition of these same patients to the ranks of Medicaid, treating these patients could turn a profit. This is because there are certain fixed costs, primarily labor, inherent in an ASC and treating Medicaid patients could ‘plug in the gaps’ of costs associated with workers idle in between commercial or Medicare cases. While the reimbursements for Medicaid are generally lower than Medicare in most states, they only need to cover material costs, since the paid staff would be idle anyway.

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