Posts Tagged ‘Corporate Profits’

Nephrology needs more compassion—and less compliance

Wednesday, February 10, 2016 | By William Tinker | No Comments

This blog post was made by Dori Schatell, MS, Executive Director, Medical Education Institute on May 29th, 2015. It was originally posted on Home Dialysis Central  

Instead of insisting that people must “comply,” offering understanding and compassion may go further toward helping people take on the self-management role that is so vital to long-term success with chronic disease.

At the NKF Spring Clinicals meeting in March, a comment I was told that someone made at the microphone during a session still bothers me months later. The gist of it was: “Why does all of the responsibility for improving outcomes fall on clinicians—where is the patient in all of this?” [Good point, but it goes on…] “I lose money if my patients don’t reach the quality targets. Why can’t we fine the patients if they don’t do their part?—and audience members applauded!

Really?! We really have nephrologists who believe that punishing patients for not “complying” with their orders is going to improve outcomes? It seems that our community may need a refresher course in compassion. Continue reading “Nephrology needs more compassion—and less compliance” »

Is the Anti-kickback Exemption for Nephrologist going away?

Thursday, February 13, 2014 | By arlene | No Comments

The Anti-kickback Law was put in place to prevent Doctors profiting from referral or care of patients to any medical business they have any interest or relationship whereby they profit from that referral in any way. This covers all doctors, with the exception of Nephrologists, who are exempt; this has allowed them to profit from referrals to Dialysis clinics they are in partnership with. Where else can a Doctor refer his own patient to a clinic he is affiliated with and receive a very large sum right up front.

It’s possible that change may be in the works; once this exemption is no longer in place patients will have more freedom to change doctors and clinics as needed by their personal situation. At present Nephrologists are loath to trade or take another’s patient due to the present exemption and loss of the income from these allowed kickbacks.

A GREAT BUSINESS MODEL – Profit From The Suffering of Others!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014 | By Scott | No Comments


“There’s an underlying growth in the population of patients that need dialysis. That population growth is roughly four percent,” said Jim Hilger, DaVita’s chief accounting officer.

DaVita operates in 44 states, has 53,000 employees and pulled in more than $12 billion in revenue last year. This is up from operating in 42 states with 32,500 employees and $5.7 billion in revenue in 2008. DaVita has been opening about 75 new clinics each year across the country.

“For our dialysis business, we weren’t really affected by the downturn of the economy and that’s because of our patients. The healthcare service we provide these patients is life sustaining,” Hilger said. “It’s a very stable business.”

Long story short: patients will show up for treatment regardless of the state of the economy — good or bad.

Recession, recovery haven’t dampened DaVita’s growth
Company officials excited about future of employer-focused Paladina system

DaVita sets aside more contingency funds

Monday, November 11, 2013 | By Scott | No Comments

The Denver Post – 11/05/2013

Dialysis giant DaVita HealthCare Partners has set aside an additional $97 million on top of $300 million the company put in a contingency fund this year to settle criminal and civil anti-kickback investigations.

Read more

Dialysis Patients being discharged with no appeal, no assistance from CMS & ESRD

Thursday, September 19, 2013 | By Scott | No Comments

Sent: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 12:21 PM
To: Conway, Patrick H. (CMS/CCSQ)
Subject: Patients being discharged with no appeal.

Dr. Conway,

I have tried to reach you in the past. It appears that there is a trend, that has been going on for years. It has been allowing dialysis units to discharge patients for no cause, even with creative paperwork to discharge the patient unfairly. Then when a patient is discharged the patient is blackballed at any other clinic, denying them entrance. A patient is denied a transplant and used as a payback, by labeling them non-compliant…without the patients knowledge..It is a nightmare to be a patient on dialysis.

CMS promised me that they were not going to allow anymore discharges of patients unless they are violent. These Nephrologists are now dismissing them, because they can. I am getting a record number of discharges myself.

I have one currently in Nashville and have contacted CMS at the highest levels. This patient was dismissed from a Nephrologist from Vanderbilt Medical University, a co-director of Nephrology Clinical trials. Which receives Federal dollars. He is partners with Davita.

These are just some of the discharged patients that are recent, with CMS sitting on their hands. I will not insult you with the fact that the ESRD Networks are the main players in these discharges and provide the legal way to “dump” a patient. I thought they were for quality of care of the patients.

Patients speaking out on care are fearful of retaliation.

Patients discharged have no appeal process and die. CMS has been contacted on every discharge and has sat by and did nothing.

Patients are not allowed to see their charts in many clinic…

If your interested the information is below on how to reach me. I also would invite you to go on and go to patient stories and the news with the radio interviews of patients. This industry has been allowed to do pretty much as it pleases, CMS standing by silent. This is not about healthcare and the money for patient care is going to industry “bonuses”.

I am seeking help for patients getting quality of care and to have rights in these clinics. I have done thousands of complaints, with no help from CMS. It is about time to ensure patients have rights with qualified workers. It is getting where my caseload with discharged patients and abusive practices are on the rise.

Another trend is that we have had patients have full fledged strokes in clinics and the staff will not call 911, but will call the family. Infection control is another area that is costing lives and medicare money. They simply have them go to the ER for care and they are infection free.

Arlene Mullin-Tinker
Dialysis Advocates LLC

Download their reply, it isn’t very comforting.


DaVita warns of closing clinics due to federal cuts

Monday, August 12, 2013 | By Scott | No Comments

Ed Sealover
Denver Business Journal
Kent Thiry, chairman and CEO of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc., warned the kidney-care provider could have to close a number of clinics if the federal government cuts reimbursements next year.

Kent Thiry, chairman and CEO of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc., warned the kidney-care provider could have to close a number of clinics if the federal government cuts reimbursements next year.

Following a “weak quarter” in part of its business, Kent Thiry, chairman and CEO of DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc. (NYSE: DVA), said Tuesday that the kidney-care provider would have to start closing inner-city and rural clinics if the federal government goes through with its proposed 9.4 percent reimbursement cut to dialysis providers of Medicare patients in 2014.

Thiry didn’t say how many clinics the Denver-based company would have to close. But company officials confirmed they would be those that don’t have enough private payers to subsidize the large number of Medicare and Medicaid patients the company treats, as both programs reimburse at such a low level that they’re money losers for DaVita.

“If they can’t reimburse, there will be changes to patient access to care. There’s no two ways about it,” Thiry said during DaVita’s second-quarter earnings call. “Inevitably, some centers will close, and they will tend to be those centers that serve the most vulnerable populations.”

DaVita reported net income of $254.4 million


Davita Executives Spend The Day Giving Life in Dialysis Centers

Sunday, January 27, 2013 | By arlene | No Comments

Davita Executives take one day to learn more about what is involved with care issues in their dialysis clinics.

It is nice to learn they are finally learning that the patient counts not dollars. 

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012 | By arlene | No Comments

A company that runs 2.000 dialysis clinics in the U.S. is accused of making hundreds of millions through Medicare fraud.