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Article   |    
Effects of Proprietary Management in General Hospital Psychitric Units
Eric N. Goplerud
Psychiatric Services 1986; doi:
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George Mason, University, 4400 University Drive, Fairfax, Virginia 22030

1986 American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

The rapid increase in the number of proprietary psychiatric hospitals during the last 15 years has drawn criticism from those concerned about the impact of the profit motive on the quality of patient care. This study assessed changes in the structure and quality of care on 13 acute care psychiatric units before and after a single outside proprietary firm was hired to manage the units. The study found significant improvements in many areas after the change; they included higher occupancy rates, higher staffing levels, more hours of staff inservice training, higher collections-to-billings ratios, and improved program structure and process as measured by Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals criteria. No changes were found in the length of stay or diagnostic mix of patients. The findings indicate dicate that program quality and profit are not necessarily incompatible, but the author cautions against making generalizations to other situations based on the small study sample.

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