Health Care Bill Spurring "Mergers & Acquisitions" in Sector

You're going to love this one. The New York Times is reporting that instead of reducing health care costs by the reform bill, Doctors, Hospitals and Insurance companies are merging and also using their new clout for lobbying against any regulations. That's right, a monopoly and we all know monopolies do not bring down costs. Even worse, we have predictions that the big winners will be offshore outsourcers on the health care technology front, also consolidating.

Currently, there are bonuses in the new health care law for those bringing down costs. So, instead of really bringing down costs, Hospitals, Doctors are consolidating. The New York Times:

Now, eight months into the new law there is a growing frenzy of mergers involving hospitals, clinics and doctor groups eager to share costs and savings, and cash in on the incentives. They, in turn, have deployed a small army of lawyers and lobbyists trying to persuade the Obama administration to relax or waive a body of older laws intended to thwart health care monopolies, and to protect against shoddy care and fraudulent billing of patients or Medicare.

Consumer advocates fear that the health care law could worsen some of the very problems it was meant to solve — by reducing competition, driving up costs and creating incentives for doctors and hospitals to stint on care, in order to retain their cost-saving bonuses.

Information Technology is also being consolidated:

The market commentary goes on to assert that, in the not too distant future, a few companies will emerge to lead the healthcare information industry much as Bloomberg and Thomson Reuters lead the financial information technology arena.

From the report on health care I.T. trends, here we are, building yet another for profit industry in India and enabling the offshore outsourcers:

We will witness a new data outsourcing trend (Healthcare BPO) for both government-owned as well as privatelyowned HIEs, whereby the owners of the HIE will contract out the management of the data (including image data) flowing within their own networks. Whether the winners will be the traditional outsourcing companies such as Accenture, HP, IBM, etc (capitalizing on their managed services outsourcing experience), or builders of HIEs such as Axolotl or Medicity (capitalizing on their deep knowledge of healthcare infrastructure software), or new entrants is yet uncertain. But, we believe parties closest to building these exchanges will be best suited for becoming the major data outsourcing companies of tomorrow.

BPO stands for Business Process Outsourcing. In other words, it's codespeak for to Bangalore we go!

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