Hospitals use tax exemption as a way for facing financial burdens. This allows hospitals to continue their operations by providing high quality care and providing free or discounted care to poor individuals. The implications for denying tax exemption can be financially detrimental to many non-for-profit hospitals and subsequently for many uninsured individuals who need access to care. Although I truly believe that there should be very strict regulations to rule tax exemptions for hospitals and healthcare organizations and I totally agree with the Supreme Court ruling in this case, I feel that this case is very controversial and leads to many fundamental arguments in regards to this subject.
The court analyzed each of the factors outlined in Korzen’s case and concluded that Provena only satisfied two of the necessary factors and therefore did not qualify for the tax exemption. According to the court, Provena’s funds were mainly generated from providing medical services for a fee rather than from charities organizations. Patients were billed regularly and they were automatically referred to collections agencies when they could not pay. Hospital charges were waived only after it was determined that patients did not have or were not eligible for insurance coverage, lacked the resources to pay directly, and were eligible for the charitable care program. On the other hand, Provena alleges several important arguments in response to the courts analysis. They alleged that the hospital provided care to everyone who requested it regardless of their financial circumstances and that they provided discounted care for poor individuals. Nevertheless, the court stated that the discounted care was illusory because the charges w...
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McKenna, B.J., McKenna, N.K. (2010). Provena Covenant Medical Center V. The Department of Revenue: Hospital property tax exemptions and the charitable use requirement. Health Care Lawyer, 26 (4), 9-11.
Kiselev, M. (2010). Provena Covenant Medical Center V. Department of Revenue: The decision that may end charitable exemptions for nonprofit hospitals. Illinois Business Law Journal. Retrieved from, http://www.law.illinois.edu/.
Baker, A. (2011). New U.S. census data show rise in number of uninsured Americans, underscoring importance of Affordable Care Act, http://www.apha.org/.
Showalter, J.S. (2011). The Law of Healthcare Administration (5th ed.). Health Administration Press. ISBN: 978-1567939576.
Bergen, k. (2011). Illinois Department of Revenue denies tax exemptions for 3 hospitals. Chicago Tribune. Retrieved from, http://articles.chicagotribune.com/.
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