- More is needed to fix the U.S. healthcare system than just reining in costs, Cleveland Clinic CEO Toby Cosgrove said in an interview with Fox Business Network.
- Hospitals all across the country have tried to become more efficient through consolidation to survive in today’s healthcare environment, Cosgrove said.
- He noted hospital occupancy in the U.S. is roughly at 65% and due to decreased payments "almost a quarter of the hospitals now running in the red."
“If we do not see consolidation and increase efficiency, we are going to see hospital to see hospital closures across the country,” Cosgrove said.
The Cleveland Clinic CEO said he expects to see more consolidation in other sectors of the healthcare industry, including the health insurance, pharmaceutical, and medical device sectors.
Greater consolidation of payers will further drive hospital consolidation as hospital administrators look for more leverage at the negotiating table, according to Cosgrove. The federal government’s antitrust lawsuit to block the merger of Anthem and Cigna got underway Monday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.
Cosgrove also cautioned against any ACA reform legislation that would compromise coverage for the 20 million Americans enrolled through ACA exchanges. “We have to continue to keep those people covered, otherwise the premise for hospitals of more patients, even though we are being paid less, is going to cause more and more hospitals to have major economic problems,” he said.