Rate Increase OK’d for OVMC

CHARLESTON (AP) – Many West Virginians will be paying more for health care this year under rate increases the state Health Care Authority has approved for 15 hospitals.

The increases affect people with private insurance and those who pay out of their own pocket. They range from as low as 1.24 percent at Bluefield Regional Medical Center to as high as 8.7 percent at Fairmont General Hospital.

Ohio Valley Medical Center’s 5.09-percent increase was the only change in costs approved for the Northern Panhandle.

Only one rate was lowered: Charleston Surgical Hospital’s rate is falling by less than half of 1 percent.

Hospital administrators call the increases routine.

“It basically allows hospitals to keep up with rising costs on the other end,” said Dale Witte, spokesman for Charleston Area Medical Center. “We think it’s reasonable.”

The other rate hikes include: 4.3 percent at CAMC; 3.6 percent at CAMC Teays Valley in Hurricane; 6 percent at West Virginia University Hospitals; 4.25 percent at United Hospital Center in Bridgeport; 4.75 percent at Raleigh General Hospital in Beckley; 6.5 percent at Summersville Regional Hospital; 4.58 percent at City Hospital in Martinsburg; 5.25 percent at Williamson Memorial Hospital; 4.24 percent at Logan Regional Hospital; 4.74 percent at Camden Clark Memorial Hospital in Parkersburg; 6.97 percent at Greenbrier Valley Medical Center in Ronceverte; and 4.75 percent at Davis Memorial Hospital in Elkins.