Fine kettle of fish: this further proves that our health system is a MESS

http://www.northjersey.com/news/meadowlands-hospital-slashing-102-jobs-as-patient-count-plummets-1.1048609?page=all

About a month ago, I was at an event and the president of the hospital was one of the speakers. According to her, everything was great at that facility and things wree picking up and there is to be a new cancer center opening, etc.

Well, that was in June.

This is now a scant month later…

What a royal mess and what a fiasco.

NONE of this happened overnight. This has been going on for 4 years.  Who the H do they think is born yesterday???

To summarize, Meadowlands has been under ownership since mid 2010 by 3 owners…who never owned a hospital prior to the purchase of this facility. When they proposed ownership, they promised the moon, the sun and the stars and every other celestial body in between.

The news just broke about 4 hours ago….apparently nobody knows where the money is going. There is an 11M profit reported but that money seems to have taken a hike.

On average there are 25 patients in the house. This is a 210 bed facility. Admissions have plummeted over the last few months and sharply.

I would like to know why haven’t the employees been on red alert: if you work in the lab, you’re only getting bloodwork for twenty five clients per day???

A 210 bed hospital should have about 150 patients –and more — getting bloodwork on a daily basis!

How many clients are in their ICU and CCU? How many beds in L&D are full??? How many babies are in the nursery right now?

It used to be that if you did not have a certain amount of births per year, the state would close your labor and delivery unit — why isn’t the drop in births a red flag to the state???

Nobody noticed the disparity and everybody in every inpatient department is likely as not doing nothing, for most of the day. Didn’t any employees in those departments think that is odd?

Where is the department of health while all of this has been going on? THey didn’t even stay on top of it when a report was delayed??? The report is overdue 13 months.

There are 30 of 50 pages of a report that are blacked out and inaccessible. Why is this not a red flag?

And this is the same nefarious bunch that has approved the sale of that other hospital about 10 miles to the west of there.

This is a mess and a big one — 100 employees have been laid off because of this. We have a great many residents of our town that work at that facility.

My guess is that this hospital will close. How is it possible we can bail this hospital out, too??? Our state is BROKE or so I have heard.

Get the 3 owners, arrest them and do the same with any body from a board of directors or administration and for anybody who has a close encounter with hospital funds of any kind: business office, accounting, AP and AR to name a few. Something is very wrong here and answers are needed.

And this same department of health approved the sale of that other hospital — the only saving grace at Hospital X is that the owners have owned other hospitals.

What a mess and a big one. It will be highly interesting to see what happens to Meadowlands.

This is looting and rape and pillage. And apparently nobody cares.

5 thoughts on “Fine kettle of fish: this further proves that our health system is a MESS”

  1. I always wonder how people get rich today. I went to college, but never had a job that required a college degree. I followed the rules, and never got anywhere career-wise! I, until the age of 45 yrs. old kept asking, “Where is mine?” And now I know there was no “mine” for me! I am too honest, and unfortunately the world is now run by con men. This hospital situation, of which you write, is just more of the same. Con men getting rich the only way that is possible today:By cheating. We live in a ‘Great Gatsby’ world -‘old sport’; As Gatsby would no doubt tell us.

  2. How simply awful for those employees. 25 patients in the entire house???

    What the heck are the lab people, respiratory, xray and all of the other inpatient departments doing — staring at each other all day? isn’t anybody livid that nobody is being admitted???

    And that is the meat of it: no physician on staff is admitting their patient! They are probably taking them to Christ, Hackensack, JC Med or maybe Mary’s in Hoboken.

    Somebody’s taken the money and run. Arrest these 3 principles and hold accountable every person who has been within 10 miles of the hospital’s finances — this includes the littlest clerk in the business office.

    What do we do? Get more state money that doesn’t exist to keep this place alive, too? No: CLOSE IT.

    We never needed this facilitiy; it started out as a rich man’s toy: it was owned and run by a dozen physicians. That ended a very long time ago.

    The CEO running the ship was and is a Christie appointee to the state division of banking and insurance. The guy is perhaps 50 bu the looks of his photo — my gosh, is he doing BOTH jobs — running a hospital plus attending to his state job, too?

    Sorry but that shouldn’t be. This is now a horrible conflict of interest. He’s in bed with what more or less is a private business — then again, politics as usual, in these here parts. So sad.

    The littlest of businesses and wow, one self run, has a budget. Every inch of the way there is a papertrail or some sort of accountability. You meant to tell me that a hospital hasn’t got a plan for budgeting???

    This is an excuse and nothing more: “We don’t know how to budget our money” is bullshit. Period.

    This was never the greatest of hospitals, not even when it opened in April of 1976. They were harridans over there and never too nice; they had a parking lot that you had to pay to use. Okay; lots of hospitals have that now; you pull in, get your ticket and on yer way out, you pay an attendant. Fine. I have no problem with that.

    But here is where it was at: friends of mine accidentally pulled into the hospital parking lot about a year after the place opened. They went as far as pulling into that little slip right at the entrance where you get your ticket to pay on the way out.

    They figured, Lemme back out rather than pull in because I’ll have to go inside to the desk, get a token, and then pay to get out of the lot.
    At the time, the fee to pay was a dollar, I think.

    They backed out of the slot they pulled into — and got 4 flat tires!

    Some sort of contraption with spikes came up as they backed out and did it! The tires were slashed.

    My friend was furious — she called the hospital and they said Tough luck and I think she got the same from the town. They told her Private Lot, Nothing We Can Do.

    This hospital has been the master of the overcharge for services for years. Then again, all hospitals do that, charge $5 for a Tylenol or charge a pretty penny for the “wecome kit” you get when you are a patient. This is a well kept secret, and kept secret even more now, now that nobody ever receives an itemized hospital bill anymore.

  3. The most disturbing part:

    Nobody seems to care.

    Nobody cares where the money went. Nobody cares there are no admissions. Nobody cares that these 3 owners used their hospital for their own personal piggybank. Nobody cares enough to get down there and find out what happened. No employees are protesting, the community isn’t outraged — and no groups like the state or an accrediting board or some other entity that normally inspects the hospital are there to have a look at the place and find out what’s what.

    And right after they announced layoffs there was an announcement made that they’ve evidently struck up a deal with the VA and gubmint…to take over the overflow of the vets who need medical help and can’t get/are waiting to get a VA hospital appointment.

    “We will hire more people if needed”?

    Did this man forget that he just announced that there would be 102 people laid off, because funds at the hospital are kind of flakey???

    He is already a failure. That hospital isn’t going to survive and quite frankly, you do not leave the lights on for an average of 25 patients in-house.

    Didn’t they ever think to call a meeting of all physicians and other medical staff that has admitting privledges and ask them “Why aren’t you sending your patients here” and LISTEN to the replies???

    I have decided that the takeover by investors was nothing but a scam — the 3 of them used our hard working dollars as their private and personal piggy bank; the plan for themn to “Save” Meadowlands was never designed to work.

    I also don’t like it that this Constandine guy was called in to “save” the place…my gosh, he’s doing the same thing the 3 principles did when they proposed buying the place: promised the world! This song is already oh so familiar — and anybody who is a Republican appointee to a state job is already bad news.

    An attorney to run a hospital?

    Really? How is this going to benefit the clients, the employees and the community???

    I do not predict a positive and happy end for the employees — do you think a medical technologist in that lab will ever find another full time med tech job? Doubtful. same goes for the rest of the allied health jobs. Same goes for every job in the house.

    And it is not a positive outcome for us, in the community.

    I said it before when it came to the Panasonic move to Newark:

    When a business closes, the town loses part of its spirit and part of its life. Yep, even if it is a LOUSY business: it will still kill spirit and life.

  4. Something similar happened to Long Island College Hospital in Brooklyn. My mother taught there in the 1970s: it was an busy place.

    But for years, they ran half-empty, losing money. The hospital became part of the State University system, but that didn’t help. There were some public protests, but the general assumption was that the government would find some way to fix it. The union employees leaned on the politicians, and things held together for some years.

    The place finally closed this past May, after a run of over 150 years. St. Vincent’s in Greenwich Village closed a few years ago, after a similarly long run.

    I don’t see the trend reversing anytime soon.

    1. Hospitals were jobs you could count on. They were a mainstay in the community, ratables for the neighborhood (lunch and dinner clients for local restaurants, homeowners, etc) and “friends” of the town and community they did business in.

      There was always a volunteer program, something informative for the community to go check out and I am sure there were donations made to local schools and such — there was also the “goodwill” fee they paid in lieu of property taxes.

      All of this is now gone.

      The closing hospital is now the “new” closed and shuttered local manufacturer. That’s what it looks like.

      A scary prediction: you’ll have the “great” hospital, for those who can pay… and the shitty “St. Elsewhere”/”Childrens Hospital” for the poor who cannot.

      This is another reason why it is bad for an investor to buy a hospital:

      The “personality” and “community” aspect of the hospital will be done.

      That is, you won’t see that investor have a department that coordinates “civic affairs” — there will be no more community programs, no more things like “learn CPR here for free,” no Vounteen or Candy Striper programs (yes, they still call them candystripers in many hospitals) and nothing like a “Cook Light For Your Heart” program.

      If the hospital sponsored a scholarship fund, I am pretty sure that will be discontinued, too.

      The fundraisers the hospital used to have will probably be ended. IF they had a bowling league or hospital softball team, forget that, too: it will probably be discontinued.

      This is now a shoot-before-you-see-the-whites-of-their-eyes business that is being run: their only goal is to make money and lots OF it, and take care of their own on the inside. They won’t give 2 red shits about the community or the public.

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