Why the Canceled Baylor-Memorial Merger Might Be Good For Hospital Quality and Cost

When Baylor Scott and White and Memorial Hermann announced a now-canceled merger in October, leaders on both sides of the deal spoke about how the increased scale would improve efficiency while sharing of best practices would improve the quality of care. Promises of lower prices and improved care make the merger look like a no-brainer, but numerous studies call these claims into question. A New York Times article details research that shows how a concentrated and less competitive healthcare market results in worse care for patients, especially those whose health insurance is paid for by the government. The merger would… Full Story

Two Local Hospitals Named to IBM Watson Health’s Top 100

Since 1993, IBM Watson Health has published an annual study spotlighting the 100 best performing hospitals, and has named Baylor Scott & White Medical Center – Grapevine and Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Southwest Fort Worth to the list.  The study looks at publicly available data for clinical, operational, and patient satisfaction metrics. IBM found that the hospitals on its list had better risk-adjusted outcomes while maintaining a lower average cost per patient and a higher profit margin than other hospitals in the study. Winning hospitals had a 24.9 percent higher survival rate, 18.7 fewer complications, 19.3 percent healthcare associated infections, with hospital stays… Full Story

Following Nixed Baylor Merger, Memorial Hermann CEO to Step Down

CEO and president of Memorial Hermann Health System Chuck Stokes will retire from the Houston-based provider at the end of the year, according to the Houston Business Journal. He has been in the position less than two years. Stokes has been with Houston’s largest nonprofit health system since 2008, serving as executive vice president and chief operating officer before he became CEO in July 2017. “I have penned many memos in my 40-year career, but none as difficult as this,” HBJ reports. “It is with bittersweet emotions and profound gratitude that today I announce my decision to retire at the… Full Story

Most North Texas Hospital Systems Are Clearing More Than 10 Percent in Yearly Profits

This piece has been updated with a response from Baylor and as well as Baumgarten in regards to financial discrepancies.  If you sit and listen to health provider executives, they will tell you about how they want to improve the quality of care while cutting costs. They have noble goals, but the numbers show that the North Texas healthcare market is raking in the cash with middling quality results. Almost all of North Texas’ health systems have yearly 10 percent profit margins, and the most lucrative health systems have margins nearing 20 percent with yearly net incomes over $1 billion.… Full Story

Five Possible Reasons the Baylor Scott and White Merger Didn’t Happen

Execs from Baylor Scott and White and Memorial Hermann haven’t released any information about why they called off the merger—other than their belief that they can achieve their goals separately—leading many in the industry to speculate as to how they came to that conclusion. Allan Baumgarten, who prepares the Texas Health Market Review every two years and has extensive knowledge of the healthcare business in Texas and nationwide, indulged my speculative questioning and shared five reasons that may have been the reason the merger was eighty-sixed. The prospect of a lengthy and expensive anti-trust challenge Baumgarten says that even though… Full Story

Baylor Scott and White’s Net Income Down 55 Percent in First Half of Year

On the heels of a canceled merger with Memorial Hermann in the Houston area, Baylor Scott and White saw it’s income drop to $267.7 million in the first half of the 2019 fiscal year compared to $595.5 million at the same time last year according to unaudited financial documents. Much of the losses have been due to market volatility, with the stock market causing similar if not greater losses in other health systems around the country. Kaiser Permanente in California saw a 71 percent loss in income compared to last year due to shaky markets as well. Baylor hasn’t provided… Full Story

Meet BSW’s Matt Chambers, D CEO’s Enterprise CIO of the Year

This week, D CEO held its Chief Information Officer/Chief Technology Officer Awards, recognizing the top tech business leaders in North Texas. Several of the nominees apply their innovative expertise to the healthcare field, and were kind enough to share their thoughts on everything from significant achievements to their toughest challenges. Baylor Scott and White’s Chief Information Officer Matthew Chambers won D CEO’s outstanding CIO at an enterprise company. Below are his responses to our Q and A leading up to the awards.   What has been your most significant professional achievement in the past year or so?    “I am… Full Story