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CSC Survey Reveals Hospitals Find Current Recession Far Worse Than Last Downturn; Emergency Visits to Climb
Date:12/9/2008

74 Percent of Hospitals Have Already Begun Taking Measures To Avoid Fiscal Crisis

FALLS CHURCH, Va., Dec. 9/PRNewswire/ -- Nearly nine in ten hospital executives believe the current economic crisis will impact their facilities more heavily than the downturn of 2001 - 2002, according to a survey released today by CSC (NYSE: CSC) titled "Treatment Plan: Hospitals Respond to the Economic Crisis." The impact is already being felt; 55 percent of hospitals have seen cuts in revenue from Medicaid payments and many are beginning to prepare for increases in uncompensated care.

With the economy weighing heavily, 74 percent of hospitals surveyed have begun implementing changes to respond to the crisis, while 20 percent are in the planning stages of responding. Some of these changes have been made to capital investments: 60 percent report delaying or deferring future construction, 55 percent report delaying or deferring future information technology (IT) projects and 38 percent have postponed IT expansions already underway.

"The economic environment, exacerbated by the credit crisis, has put the healthcare industry in uncharted waters," said Deward Watts, president of CSC's Global Healthcare Sector. "The industry's quick response to this challenge is encouraging, but tough times lie ahead. Hospitals that address changing patient demands and shifting reimbursement cycles will be better positioned to mitigate the downturn."

The study indicates 15 percent of hospitals surveyed have accelerated IT projects in hopes that the effective use of information will help deal with new patient demands and changing reimbursement cycles while concurrently improving the quality of care. At the same time, 75 percent claim that they will be cutting costs, while 59 percent will be taking the downturn a
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SOURCE CSC
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