Hospitals in 2019 provided $41.6 billion in uncompensated care, meaning care for which no payment was received from the patient or insurer, according to the latest data from the AHA's Annual Survey of Hospitals.
Uncompensated care is the sum of a hospital's bad debt and the financial assistance it provides. It does not include other unfunded costs of care, such as underpayment from Medicare and Medicaid, or account for other services and programs that hospitals provide to meet identified community needs.
In 2019, Medicare and Medicaid underpaid U.S. hospitals by $75.8 billion, meaning hospitals received only 87 cents for every dollar they spent caring for Medicare patients and only 90 cents for every dollar they spent caring for Medicaid patients. The data precede and do not reflect the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.