Investigation - Charities Profiting Millions

Full story: WTKR

In 2006 Alicia Epps was earning just $7 per hour. She got so sick she went to the emergency room.
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blkguerilla

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#1
May 6, 2010
 

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they should pay more money to the people that take car of me ,you and everyone else!!!
Robin

Newport News, VA

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#2
May 6, 2010
 

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I had a CAT scan recently for abdominal pain (2 yrs/chronic) & have been to a # of Doctors. My OB/GYN did an ultrasound, referred me to a urologist who did a $600+ laproscopy then sent me for a CAT scan.(my portion of this $4,500+ test AFTER insurance is $2350!!!! I'm self-employed for 12 yrs. & only make between $21,000-24,000/yr. This ONE test is costing me 10% of my yearly salary!!! I never go out to eat or shopping, I'm very thrifty w/ my money, & I don't waste. Yet-Sentara says I do not qualify for 'charity or financial assistance'. I offered to pay $30-50/month which is all I can afford at the moment, but Sentara is not happy with that & wants a MINUMUM payment of $213/month! Even if I pay 30-50/month they say I will still be sent to a collection agency & it will affect my almost perfect credit score that I've spent my entire life paying everything on time & never owing money! It makes me furious. Sentara has millions & pays their executives outrageous salaries (see article/news story seen on Ch. 3 news on May 6, 2010)& they claim to be a 'charity' hospital & are given tax-free status!!???
Bonnie Ball

Virginia Beach, VA

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#3
May 6, 2010
 

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How can any business over charge for services/products to pay the salaries now being paid "key personnel"? How can a health care system, Sentara for instance, send a bill, show the insurance company's payment and then shows the write-off? Why charge the write-off at all? Is it their charitable contribution? And, why does a health care system have hospitals on the books like Sentara Bayside? A hospital dogs should not go to! Now that is not a charitable contribution, but instead, is a dissservice to the community.
Jay

United States

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#4
May 6, 2010
 

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I've been a patient of Sentara for years. As an uninsured patient, thankfully I've only paid for work that they had to send off to be read by either a radiologists...pathologist, etc. Sentara don't hound you for their bill and if they will work with you. All you have to do is send them in what you can afford a month. If it's only $10.00, if they take you money order or check, then that's all you have to send. My only problem is that they don't deal with a lot of charity programs outside of the hospitals...i.e. gastrointestinal/liver, Atlantic Anesthesia....because this is where it really hits hard. Other than that the charity programs has helped me greatly (thanks Sentara)~!~
Heidi

Norfolk, VA

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#5
May 7, 2010
 

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Why are all the document used in this story from 2008? This is 2010! I think if you're going to run a story like this at least your facts should be up to date. IMHO
Alf

Norfolk, VA

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#6
May 7, 2010
 

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Heidi wrote:
Why are all the document used in this story from 2008? This is 2010! I think if you're going to run a story like this at least your facts should be up to date. IMHO
I hope you did not get your W2 for 2010 already. That is why. And it's from 2008/2009.
The numbers might be more in 2010 because the bosses give themselves a raise first and then give the scraps to the peons so they don't revolt.
DONNA K

Virginia Beach, VA

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#7
May 7, 2010
 

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I WILL DIE BEFORE I ENTER A SENTARA HOSPITAL OR ANYTHING AFFILIATED WITH SENTARA. I HAVE NO MEDICAL INS.AND I OWED THEM $300.00. THEY HOUNDED ME WITH PHONE CALLS, THREATENED MY CREDIT, CALLED MY PARENTS HOUSE,ETC. IT IS A SHAME THAT THIS WORLD IS ATE UP WITH GREED TODAY. THERE IS NO HUMAN COMPASSION ANYMORE AND MONEY IS THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL. I AM SADDENED BY THE LACK OF SUBSTANCE AND HEART IN MY SO CALLED FELLOW AMERICANS. GOD HAVE MERCY ON THEIR SOULs.
I am Sentara

Norfolk, VA

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#8
May 7, 2010
 

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I work for Sentara and also choose to seek patient care for me and my family through Sentara facilities and providers. I am proud of what my organization does for Hampton Roads and it's citizens. The safety and quality of care programs are very good. This news story was full of spin. Nothing was said about all the other good that Sentara does to improve the health of Hampton Roads residents every day.
SADDENED

Virginia Beach, VA

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#9
May 7, 2010
 

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This is truly outragious! This is why people cannot afford medical care because they are paying top execs all this 'extra' and for what? Does anyone know? Sentara does not sound like a 'non-profit' orginzation but more of a 'for-profit' wall street type company-plainly crooks! GET THEM IRS-MAKE THEM DO WHAT THEY SHOULD BE DOING IN THE FIRST PLACE-TAKE CARE OF THE COMMUNITY!!!!
Fred Green

Norfolk, VA

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#10
May 7, 2010
 

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You have the right to choose!
You can choose to have insurance with a high co-pay
You can choose to have 3 kids and make $7.00 a hour
You can choose to go to a Sentara facility or not
My choice is Sentara! For the past 15 years they have never treated me or my family wrong!
Fred Green

Norfolk, VA

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#11
May 7, 2010
 

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I am Sentara wrote:
I work for Sentara and also choose to seek patient care for me and my family through Sentara facilities and providers. I am proud of what my organization does for Hampton Roads and it's citizens. The safety and quality of care programs are very good. This news story was full of spin. Nothing was said about all the other good that Sentara does to improve the health of Hampton Roads residents every day.
AMEN!
I am not Sentara

Virginia Beach, VA

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#12
May 7, 2010
 

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I am Sentara wrote:
I work for Sentara and also choose to seek patient care for me and my family through Sentara facilities and providers. I am proud of what my organization does for Hampton Roads and it's citizens. The safety and quality of care programs are very good. This news story was full of spin. Nothing was said about all the other good that Sentara does to improve the health of Hampton Roads residents every day.
Sentara may be nice and sweet to you because they want to keep you in the dark-ie saying they are all that. And Sentara may really help the absolute 'dirt' poor... but what about those that just barely past 'dirt' poor status... they just get stuck with a huge bill? Who helps them? I mean really only 4% spent for 'charity' cases?! Why not 50% or 75% spent for charity? Oh wait, that was spent paying the bonuses...
History Buff

Portsmouth, VA

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#13
May 7, 2010
 

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This story was so blatantly misleading that it would be laughable if the topic of charity care and salaries wasn't so serious. Keep in mind that nobody posting here or interviewed for the story was denied immediate and proper care for treatment. It's only when it comes time to pay the bill that they have a problem with Sentara. If you walked into a grocery store/auto dealership or any other company, took the merchandise or service and said bill me later and maybe I'll pay the bill or maybe not you would be arrested for stealing...not for profit doesn't mean "not needing to make money." You cannot provide world class health care without money. WTKR should send out true investigative reporters for these stories and keep away from the National Enquirer school of journalism....
Dennis

Hampton, VA

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#14
May 7, 2010
 

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Sentara is a horrible hospital unless you have money or good insurance. The ER is good but once you go upstairs things change. I know of story after story of people treated badly once admitted. And to look at the pay of these people working 15 or 20 hours a week for six figure pay!! no wonder our health services are ranked so poorly world wide and the Hampton Sentara is a perfect example of why!
Jay

Norfolk, VA

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#15
May 7, 2010
 

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By comparison, the highest paid employees at these non-profit organizations in 2008 (may include base salary, bonus, other incentive pay. Source: Del Jones, USA TODAY):

Yale University David Swensen, chief investment officer $4,389,727

University of Southern Calif. Pete Carroll, head coach, football $4,386,652

Columbia University David Silvers, clinical professor of dermatology $3,738,419

Duke University Mike Krzyzewski, head coach, men's basketball $3,705,909

Cornell University Zev Rosenwaks, professor obstetrics and gynecology $3,392,417

University of Chicago James Madara, vice president medical affairs $2,870,997

New York University James Grifo, professor obstetrics and gynecology $2,867,596

University of Pennsylvania Ralph Muller, CEO, University of Pennsylvania Health System $2,518,232

Stanford University John Powers, president Stanford Management Co.$2,429,757

Princeton University Andrew Golden, president, Princeton University Investment $2,091,425
Mariposa

Virginia Beach, VA

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#16
May 7, 2010
 

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I requested assistance from Sentara back in 2008. I was labled a high level pregnancy due to complications during the pregnancy and was sent to a therapist for physical therapy. I was also on disability and only receiving have of my part time salary at the time and this was told to the rep I requested assistance from. I wasn't able to return back to work till August of 2008. I never received the form for assistance and contacted the office on numerous occasions. They verified my address and I told them it was correct. Still no form. I was told to call back around 12noon although I requested the form to be resent. Still no form. I can't remember if I was sending them anything at the time. I was trying to get back on my feet and still waiting for the form and leaving messages with the female answering the phone at the office for assistance. I want to say, Sandra was the name of the person I needed to speak with. My shift start at 12 noon and Sandra left at 4 or 4:30 pm. I wasn't able to make those types of calls at work due to privacey issues. Then I start receiving calls and letters from collection agencies regarding mine and my sons. I advised the two agencies I was still waiting on the form for assistance with my accounts I had requested. I contacted Sentara again and no one in the office would assist me since the accounts were sent to the agencies. I advised them I couldn't afford the payments and was told there was nonething they could do for me. I worked out payment arrangements with the agencies and then was let go from my job in January 2009 I advised the agencies and was told the account info would be sent to the credit reporting agencies. This is how sentara helped me!
Brenda

Portsmouth, VA

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#17
May 7, 2010
 

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Isn't it interesting that this so called story comes out just before Sentara meets with the City Council of Chesapeake for their vote on allowing Sentara to open a 120 bed ER on Volvo Parkway? Why didn't WTKR investigate other area hospitals in their report? Other hospitals also go after payments from patients who don't pay. And why didn't WTKR explain how Sentara is the only healthcare in this area that didn't lay off any of it's employees since this recession began? Because of this type of reporting I will no longer watch any WTKR news and I will be sure and tell everyone I come in contact with the truth abouth what a great system Sentara is.
Curious

Virginia Beach, VA

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#18
May 7, 2010
 
Isnt Sentara Heart the ones that hired the phoney company to take over a legit contract?
grant

Portsmouth, VA

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#19
May 7, 2010
 

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This is an outrage. I work for this company and never understood why we got a 15.00 gift card for christmas and have it taxed in January. I went to walmart to get a gift card and did not pay tax on it!
Mike Mather WTKR

Chicago, IL

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#20
May 7, 2010
 
Heidi wrote:
Why are all the document used in this story from 2008? This is 2010! I think if you're going to run a story like this at least your facts should be up to date. IMHO
The 2008 tax documents (Form 990) are the most recent available for all local charities and hospitals. Sentara's 2009 documents have not yet been published.

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