Archive for October 12th, 2010

Fortis Global Health Care – International Healthcare Business Booming

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010
Fortis Global Healthcare To Buy Hong Kong Quality Healthcare Asia’s Healthcare Operations
Oct 10, 2010 11:02 AM EDT

HONG KONG -(Dow Jones)- Fortis Global Healthcare Holdings Pte Ltd., owned by the family that controls India’s Fortis Healthcare Ltd. (532843.BY), said Sunday that it is buying the healthcare businesses of Hong Kong-listed Quality Healthcare Asia Ltd., excluding QHA’s elderly healthcare businesses. Fortis Global is paying HK$1,541 million (US$197.6 million), QHA disclosed in a separate statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange Sunday.

Fortis Global Healthcare, owned by billionaire brothers Malvinder Mohan Singh and Shivinder Mohan Singh, is the family’s vehicle to spearhead the creation of a pan-Asian international healthcare business, it said in a statement.

The company plans to build and aggregate healthcare businesses and assets internationally, covering various segments of healthcare from hospitals, through to diagnostics, primary care and other healthcare segments, to create an integrated healthcare business, it said.

India-listed Fortis Healthcare Limited is a leading hospital chain in India. In July, Fortis Healthcare bowed out of a bidding race for Singapore’s Parkway Holdings (PKWXY, P27.SG) and sold the approximately 25% stake it held in Singapore’s largest hospital chain to Malaysia’s sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Berhad, which made a general offer for Parkway.

QHA is the largest private integrated healthcare service platform in Hong Kong, providing medical services and allied health services. The acquired businesses comprise a network of over 60 wholly-owned medical centers, over 500 affiliated clinics, over 40 dental and physiotherapy centers, and a private nursing agency with a database of over 3,000 nurses.

“Fortis Global Healthcare will be our vehicle of growth for international healthcare businesses outside India, allowing Fortis Healthcare in India to continue to focus on the tremendous growth in the Indian hospital business,” Malvinder Mohan Singh, Chairman of Fortis Global Healthcare, said.

“We believe that there are tremendous opportunities for growth in the Quality Healthcare businesses, both in Hong Kong and also potentially in China and will look to support the management and professionals of the Quality Healthcare team in realizing such growth.”

Copyright © 2010 Dow Jones Newswires

Editor’s Note: Last April we traveled to Costa Rica to tour medical care facilities in San Jose. We found them state of the art facilities staffed by physicians from around the world. Many practiced in the United States before moving to Costa Rica. We were surprised to discover many American patients seeking treatment there. At one hospital we visited, the waiting room was filled with Americans. The future of American health care may be overseas.

PPO Network Prohibits Audit – Employer Told Must Pay Egregious Bill

Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

Most employers who self-fund their group medical plan utilize a PPO network. This contractual agreement to access “preferred pricing” through participating providers carries certain onerous requirements such as the inability, or limited ability to audit claims.

Plan Fiduciaries have a duty to oversee the assets of the plan and ensure the plan pays fair and reasonable fees. Retaining full audit rights are important. To give that right up, violates the fiduciary’s responsibility under ERISA.

Here is a perfect example of a self-funded employer group who hired an independent outside forensic auditor to review a hospital bill. The audit identified $80,340.75 in overcharges to the plan.  Most of these charges were for services never received by  the patient, or were duplicate charges.

The PPO sent the following letter – PPO Audit – to the employer threatening to terminate the contract and demanding that the self-funded employer immediately remit $80,340.75 to the hospital.

Editor’s Note: This is upside down. Additional “gotchas” in a typical PPO contract include a non-compete clause which prohibits the employer from negotiating directly with providers for two years after termination of the PPO contract.