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03/31/2022

Prof. Laura Katz Olson Discusses Her Just-Published, "Ethically Challenged: Private Equity Storms US Health Care" (March 30)

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In her just published Johns Hopkins University Press book, "Ethically Challenged, Private Equity Storms US Health Care," Professor Olson’s describes how and why Private Equity (PE) firms over the past forty years have purchased an ever-increasing number of acute and post-acute providers, physician groups, dental practices and a long list of health care ancillary services and what impacts PE firms have had/are having on the affordability and delivery of health care.  In 2020, PE constituted a $5 trillion industry with approximately 3,750 firms owning over 8,000 companies.  The US has the most corporatized healthcare system in the world.  

This 39 minute interview begins with Prof. Olson explaining briefly what prompted her to research and write the book.  She moves on to providing an overview of how PE firms operate or what's their playbook, briefly notes as an example the demise Philly's Hahnemann University Hospital's, discusses the effect PE ownership has on health care delivery, explains the "corporate practice of medicine" doctrine, discusses what she learned from physicians who sold their practices to PE, Congressional efforts to reform the PE industry including the "Stop Wall Street Looting Act," PE-related surprise billing legislation, PE performance during the pandemic, and suggests further policy reforms to better policy PE investments in healthcare.                       

Laura Katz Olson is a Distinguished Professor of Political Science at Lehigh University.  She earned her undergraduate degree at the City College of New York (CCNY) and her Ph.D. in political science at the University of Colorado Boulder.  Professor Olson has published nine books, the most recent of which is Elder Care Journey: A View from the Front Lines (SUNY Press, 2016).  Her other books include: The Politics of Medicaid (Columbia University Press); The Political Laura-photo-web Economy of Aging: The State, Private Power and Social Welfare; Aging and Public Policy: The Politics of Growing Old in America; The Graying of the World: Who Will Take Care of the Frail Elderly; Age Through Ethnic Lenses: Caring for the Elderly in a Multicultural Society; The Not So Golden Year: Caregiving, the Frail Elderly and the Long-Term Care Establishment; The Handbook of Long-Term Care Administration and Policy; and Heart Sounds (her first novel)She has been a Scholar at the Social Security Administration, a Gerontological Fellow and a Fulbright Scholar.  She also has lectured throughout Pennsylvania on Social Security, Medicare and Long-term Care policies.  Professor Olson is on the editorial board of the Journal of Aging Studies and New Political Science.

Information concerning Prof. Olson's book is at: https://www.press.jhu.edu/books/title/12719/ethically-challenged.  

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