Michigan hospitals have lost a combined $1.1 billion during the recent pandemic, and that’s even after factoring in $2.1 billion in emergency federal aid, according to a Michigan Health and Hospital Association report released July 30.

The loss of patients, canceled and delayed medical procedures, staffing changes and the need to buy additional personal protective equipment has cost the hospitals a combined $2.7 billion, according to the report. The addition cost of treating COVID-19 patients has added $440 million in emergency expenses for a total of $3.2 billion in combined financial losses.

MHA noted that MidMichigan Health lost 24 percent of its impatient volume between March and June compared to the same time period in 2019.

This comes at a time when hospitals muscle through nearly $2.6 billion in uncompensated care they typically expect during normal circumstances.

“Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic has come at a steep price,” said MHA CEO Brian Peters. “Now more than ever, support is needed for the hospitals and health care providers that have been serving on the front lines of the pandemic.”

Back in April, the financial losses for the states’ 134 hospitals was at $600 million.

Meanwhile, nursing homes also are on the financial ropes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the American Health Care Association. The profit margins of nursing homes gradually slid from 1.9 percent in 2013 to -.3 percent in 2018.

The major reason is that Medicaid patients make up 60 percent of the nursing home population and Medicaid only covers 70 percent to 80 percent of the costs of care, according to the AHCA.

Nursing homes are able to stay afloat by bringing in enough short-term Medicare post-acute care patients since Medicare is more generous with their payments.

The COVID-19 outbreaks have meant surging costs for personal protective equipment (PPE) and 18 percent higher personnel costs as staff are sidelined by the virus or fear coming into work because of it. Occupancy is down. Costs are up and without more federal funding, AHCA sees homes on the verge of collapse, said Dr. David Grabowski of Harvard Medical School.

“Some nursing homes are facing bankruptcy due to decreased Medicare revenue and the increased costs of managing patients with COVID-19,” Grabowski said to the Journal of the American Medical Association.

This story courtesy of MIRS, a Lansing-based news and information service.