60 million Americans are living in rural communities throughout the U.S. and according to Cornell University, since the 1960s, the rural population has aged more rapidly than its urban counterpart. Hospitals serving rural populations have also been aging. In fact, rural hospitals average over 50 years of age and these facilities have already out-lived their lifespan and are unable to meet the demands of modern medicine and technology.
Time to Change the Tax Code to Encourage Investment in Antiquated Rural Hospitals
Rural healthcare organizations are challenged to meet the minimum financial requirements of Local, State, or Federal assistance programs to replace aging facilities due to current debt levels and capital needed to fund their development. Additionally, programs providing for the start-up and operational funding needed to stabilize a new facility, once built, are limited by the the already over stressed, local taxing districts. It is estimated that over 14% of rural hospitals throughout the U.S. have been lost over the past ten years and at the current pace that figure will be progressively exceeded. Simply waiting for better economic times is not an option.
Bi-Partisan Incentives to privatize rural health care
A proposal is currently being considered by a bi-partisan group in Congress to provide an incentive for private, and institution investors to replace our nation’s antiquated rural hospitals. The proposal would establish tax incentives for the cooperative development of new, or replacement Rural, or Critical Access Hospitals. The proposal requires
- the incorporation of green building practices,
- installation of the latest medical innovations,
- telemedicine, and electronic medical records systems.
Included will be additional revenue generators and operational efficiencies that provide for superior levels of healthcare, enhanced with required wellness and palliative care programs resulting in lower Medicare unit costs. Congressional adoption of such a proposal will insure the local community’s ability to purchase these facilities by funding the start-up and operational stabilization period allowing its purchase through Revenue Bonds, standard, or other funding options to achieve local ownership and control within its six year investment window.
For private and institutional investors, the proposal provides for federally tax free income on the regulated interest earned in the development of these facilities and Federal Tax Credits provided for selling the facility at its development cost. Where these incentives provide the minimum investment industry returns, a safety net is in place to provide additional Federal Tax Credits in the event a facility is unable to support its sales price and is sold at a discount to support its income; thus guaranteeing both investor and community security.
300,000 New Jobs!
The potential exists to inject over $20 billion into our ailing economy during the proposed 6-year development period. It also has the potential of creating in excess of 300,000 new 21st Century jobs in healthcare and in some of the hardest hit construction and manufacturing sectors. These new facilities will become a primary economic catalyst in their respective communities, increasing the viability and quality of life for its citizens well into the future. Not to mention a dynamic boost in alleviating the current economic slump in our nation’s economy.
Proposal cost? Recouped in reduced govt spending and increased business activity!
To date, estimates suggest the costs to U.S. taxpayers for such a proposal totals $2.5 billion over 10 years; mainly from providing tax free income and tax credits. This amount will be recouped by 1.) over $6 billion in reduced government program spending, including Medicare costs, and the addition of hundreds of thousands of jobs created. Multiple studies have demonstrated for every dollar invested in the development of a new rural hospital the multiplier effect will triple its benefits over costs in economic output locally, regionally, and nationally. The broader economic analysis concludes that over $60 billion of additional economic benefits in health care and related business activity will occur.
At Cansler Consulting, we are working to enact this proposal that will enhance the quality of healthcare in rural America, create 21st Century jobs, lower Medicare costs and spur our ailing economy.
Cansler Consulting is an experienced lobbying firm in agricultural, rural healthcare, and energy policies and through our Congressional relationships we can help you influence the policy makers on Capitol Hill. You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (202) 220-3150.