The study from University of Pennsylvania, University of Chicago and New York University researchers evaluated data from 15,000 nursing homes across the United States, alongside Medicare patient data, to assess the impacts of private equity ownership on patient outcomes. In all, the researchers found that the deaths accounted for “about 160,000 lost life-years.”
Private equity firms typically take over existing corporations with borrowed or investor money and then impose cost-cutting measures to maximize revenues — often in preparation for selling off the newly stripped down firms at a profit. In the health care sector, private equity buyouts have been associated with lower staffing levels, more frequent citations for health and safety violations, shortages of supplies like ventilators that are crucial for COVID patients, and other failings tied to the constant imperative to cut costs.
In all, 70 percent of nursing homes currently operate as for-profit businesses, far more than other healthcare facilities. Only about one quarter of hospitals, for example, are for profit.
Author(s): Julia Rock, David Sirota
Publication Date: 22 February 2021
Publication Site: The Daily Poster