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Another healthcare letter from Rick Scott, this one to Shands Jax

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Gov. Rick Scott rounded off his letter-writing week with a letter to officials at UF Health Jacksonville asking 15 questions that could provide insight as to why the hospital has become “extraordinarily reliant on federal (Medicaid) funds and what can be done to improve the financial viability” of the facility.

Scott sent the letter to Chief Executive Officer UF Health Jacksonville Russell Armistead, asking:

  •  How do UF Health Jacksonville’s recent expenses related to patient care compare to the previous 10 years?
  • How do the recent overall number of admissions and payer mix of admissions compare to the 10 previous years?
  • What challenges does UF Health Jacksonville have that are different than Jackson Memorial Hospital, which recently showed $97.5 million in profits?
  • Are there any unpaid financial obligations between UF Health Jacksonville and UF Shands Gainesville?
  • What is the total amount in payments UF Health Jacksonville receives in exchange for loaning or rotating physician resident trainees to other health systems? Is there any room to increase these rotations and payments?, and
  • In the past 10 years, how much has UF Health Jacksonville spent on facility upgrades or new buildings?

Additionally Scott asks whether there are opportunities for UF Health Jacksonville to coordinate services with other hospitals geographically such as Baptist Medical Center, which showed a $181 million profit, Scott said.

Scott asked that the answers be provided to his Commission on Healthcare and Hospital Funding by May 22.

Scott sent correspondence this week to hospital and HMO executives asking them to provide detailed financial information about their businesses, including executive salaries and compensation packages as well as how much is spent on lobbying.

Scott also sent letters to HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell and Veterans Administration Robert McDonald.

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