March 09, 2011
CTMC's Behavorial Health Programs Fall Victim to Continued Medicare Cuts
SAN MARCOS, TX – Central Texas Medical Center (CTMC) and its behavioral health partner Diamond Healthcare announced today that they will be closing their Heritage Program for Senior Adults and Day One Recovery Program effective May 31, 2011. CTMC’s Heritage Program has been in existence since 2005; Day One began operations in 2008.
Continuing cuts in Medicare and other insurance providers’ reimbursements for outpatient behavioral health care have created annual losses for CTMC in these two programs in excess of $600,000 over the past two years.
“Since opening in 2005, CTMC’s Heritage Program for Senior Adults has successfully assisted hundreds of local seniors suffering from debilitating depression,” said Richard Boggess, CTMC VP and Chief Financial Officer. “Regrettably, in today’s economic climate, we have to look at every CTMC program and service and ask ourselves, are we meeting the greatest need in our community? It truly saddens us to have to close the service when it has helped so many of God’s older children return to a better quality of life.” He adds.
By stopping the loss from these behavioral health programs, the hospital plans to invest those dollars in the growing cardiac program expansion already underway at its San Marcos campus.
“Because of the current reimbursement environment, standalone outpatient behavioral health programs without a complimentary inpatient program in your community are overly challenged by decreasing Medicare dollars to pay for this type of service,” said Terry Rauschuber Sr. VP, Diamond Healthcare.
Patients currently being served by the two programs were personally notified by staff earlier this week as they attended their regular therapy sessions. Patients will have the option to remain under the care of the program until it closes on May 31, 2011 and CTMC’s behavioral health staff will work to assist them with finding other providers in the area to provide care after the program closes. Neither program will any longer be accepting new patients.
Between the two programs, CTMC employs a total of 9 employees – 5 fulltime, 1 part-time and 3 others who work with the programs on an “as needed basis.” Representatives from Diamond Healthcare and CTMC met with the individuals impacted by the closure last week in preparation of the announcement. All associates have been given 90 days notice and are eligible to apply for any other open positions at CTMC for which they qualify during this time and beyond.