To help balance its current biennium budget, the state of Ohio this summer imposed a new hospital "franchise fee" that will mean $2.6 million in taxes for Fisher-Titus Medical Center over the next two years.
Fisher-Titus Medical Center, along with all Ohio hospitals, made its first payment toward the new state budget tax Monday. Statewide, hospitals will pay more than $718 million over the biennial.
Proposed by Gov. Ted Strickland and passed by the General Assembly, the tax is being used to draw down federal Medicaid funds. Rather than fully recouping their assessments through Medicaid payments, hospitals will get back just 80 cents on the dollar leaving Ohio hospitals $145 million short. For Fisher-Titus that means a shortfall of $280,000 over two years, according to Patrick J. Martin, president of Fisher-Titus Medical Center.
"This state budget-tax, along with continued underpayments from Medicaid and Medicare, and the ever-increasing numbers of uninsured patients due to our uncertain economy, is forcing us to take an even closer look at how we can cut costs internally and re-assess our outreach programs," said Patrick Martin, president of Fisher-Titus Medical Center.