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Ethically Challenged

Private Equity Storms US Health Care

Laura Katz Olson

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Revealing the dark truth about the impact of predatory private equity firms on American health care.

Private equity (PE) firms pervade all aspects of our modern lives. Unlike other corporations, which generally manufacture products or provide services, they leverage considerable debt and other people's money to buy and sell businesses with the sole aim of earning supersized profits in the shortest time possible. With a voracious appetite and trillions of dollars at its disposal, the private equity industry is now buying everything from your opioid treatment center to that helicopter that helps…

Revealing the dark truth about the impact of predatory private equity firms on American health care.

Private equity (PE) firms pervade all aspects of our modern lives. Unlike other corporations, which generally manufacture products or provide services, they leverage considerable debt and other people's money to buy and sell businesses with the sole aim of earning supersized profits in the shortest time possible. With a voracious appetite and trillions of dollars at its disposal, the private equity industry is now buying everything from your opioid treatment center to that helicopter that helps swoop you up from a car crash site. It may even control how and when you can get your kidney dialysis.

In Ethically Challenged, Laura Katz Olson describes how PE firms are gobbling up physician and dental practices; home care and hospice agencies; substance abuse, eating disorder, and autism services; urgent care facilities; and emergency medical transportation. With a sharp eye on cost and quality of care, Olson investigates the PE industry's impact on these essential services. She explains how PE firms pile up massive debt on their investment targets and how they bleed these enterprises with assorted fees and dividends for themselves. Throughout, she argues that public pension funds, which provide the preponderance of equity for PE buyouts, tend to ignore the pesky fact that their money may be undermining the very health care system their workers and retirees rely on.

Weaving together insights from interviews with business owners and experts, newspaper articles, purchased data sets, and industry publications, Olson offers a unique perspective and appreciation of the significance of PE investments in health care. The first book to comprehensively address private equity and health care, Ethically Challenged raises the curtain on an industry notorious for its secrecy, exposing the nefarious side of its maneuvers.

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Ethically Challenged

Laura Katz Olson

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Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
6.125
x
9.25
Pages
440
ISBN
9781421442853
Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction. Hiding in Plain Sight
Chapter 1. Who Even Are They? Private Equity from Soup to Nuts
Chapter 2. The Emergence of the Alternative Asset Class
Chapter 3. Consolidating Health

Acknowledgments
Introduction. Hiding in Plain Sight
Chapter 1. Who Even Are They? Private Equity from Soup to Nuts
Chapter 2. The Emergence of the Alternative Asset Class
Chapter 3. Consolidating Health Care
Chapter 4. It's between Me and My Doctor?
Chapter 5. Drilling for Gold: Corralling Dentists
Chapter 6. Frail Elderly and Children: Homecare and Hospice
Chapter 7. Public Crisis, Private Gain: Substance Abuse and Eating Disorders
Chapter 8. Capitalizing on Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders
Chapter 9. Hijacking an Industry: Medical Ambulances and Emergency Air Transport
Conclusion. Infiltrating Our Health Care System
Appendix. Selected Private Equity Firms Buying Health Care Businesses
Abbreviations
Glossary
Notes
Bibliography
Index

Author Bio
Featured Contributor

Laura Katz Olson

Laura Katz Olson (BETHLEHEM, PA) is a distinguished professor of political science at Lehigh University. She is the author of Elder Care Journey: A View from the Front Lines and The Politics of Medicaid.