Mercy Health Systems, in their rush to not make any more profits, plans to ask Edmond, Oklahoma planning commissioners to approve the placement of a temporary structure meant to house their employed doctors until their permanent, 88 million dollar complex is built.  You see, they need to generate revenue sooner than they thought they would need to in order to not make any more profits. 

If you are wondering, “where did they get this 88 million dollars to build this complex,” you go to the head of the class.  This complex is almost directly across the highway from another facility, just built, by another competing hospital system, Integris, also not wanting to make a profit.  The Edmond Hospital (not affiliated with either of these two outfits) is an incredibly underutilized facility.  Interesting that the large corporate hospital groups like Integris and Mercy used to push “certificate of need” laws to prevent competitors from entering the market place.  Guess they’ve given up on that!

Keep in mind that these two organizations need to charge multiples of what we list on our website just to not make a profit.  They charge 5 times our prices most of the time, sometimes 10 times.  This is, of course, needed to make up for their losses in the emergency rooms where they have to “take all comers.”  If you believe this, you go to the back of the class. 

It is one thing to witness the outrageous greed of these organizations in terms of the charges they generate for what they deliver.  It is another, entirely, to see them so impatient to get their hands on some more money that they are asking a city’s permission to arrange for patient examinations and treatments in portable buildings.  I think they should set up a tent city on the construction site to deliver care if they need to not make a profit this quickly.

G. Keith Smith, M.D.