The decision concludes a regulatory review that started more than two years ago. There is a 30-day appeal window, but Vermont Legal Aid, which represented consumers in the review, doesn’t plan to appeal the decision, one of its attorneys said Wednesday.
Applying conditions to the project’s approval shows the board is “aware” of its potential to impact health care costs for consumers, and it appears the board will closely monitor any cost overruns, said Legal Aid’s Kaili Kuiper. Hospital officials have said the project won’t increase what people pay for medical care....
Kuiper, the Legal Aid attorney, also said UVMMC’s assumptions about what government health care programs will pay in the future are problematic.
She pointed to a report from Deloitte, a firm hired by the board to review UVMMC’s application, which says the hospital’s financing assumes the same 3 percent rate increase from government programs as it does from private insurers — despite historical increases to Medicare and Medicaid rates that hover between 0 percent and 2 percent.