Coronavirus is taking millions of dollars out of the nation’s medical system and threatening resources in that system.
In fact, the former Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin is warning that US hospitals could lose more than five hundred billion dollars in a hundred days during the pandemic.
The President and CEO of Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health Dr. Stephen Klasko told us about the financial situation in his hospital.
“The great news is that we were very prepared for the pandemic, we had one of the largest telehealth networks in the country and a pandemic surge group, so we had 60 days PPE. But like everybody else, we’re losing hundreds of millions of dollars a month by doing the right thing.
Let me give you one example: we use 15 000 gowns a day. Gals used to cost us 20 cents, now cost $11, so you can pretty quickly do the math at a time where fewer people are having elective surgery. It’s a huge issue for the economy because that part hasn’t even been factored in yet.
We’re one of the largest employers in Philadelphia, and the hangover of those numbers it’s going to have huge effects on investments on employees and on unemployment.
We can lose already 9 billion dollars, and only 30 percent of that might come back from government care. But the biggest issue is getting people to understand that they can talk to their doctor and get safe care.
The people are afraid to come into the system, and about 60% of people didn’t get the care they need. That’s an emergency carer, cardiology, oncology, breast health, so we’re concerned about the crisis of collateral damage and that people won’t come in for those procedures post the pandemic.
People should understand how important that is because you don’t just die from COVID-19, you died from lots of other diseases.”