NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A pioneering investment fund is launching to take advantage of the opportunities created by the challenges facing America’s healthcare system. As the first of its kind within the for-profit retail medicine market, the National Healthcare Development Fund, LLC (NHDF) is specifically designed to generate revenue for its investors from both its portfolio of real estate asset holdings in addition to its operational interests in an emerging healthcare market that is thriving as a result of supply failing to meet an overwhelming and increasing demand.
“Emergency departments have become a health care safety net for everyone”
The severity of the demand for access to medical care continues to escalate and is matched only by the substantial opportunity the burden creates for a company positioned to relieve the strain imposed on the nation’s healthcare system. The contributing factors perpetuating this dilemma are numerous, complex and practically irreversible. However, the root cause of the overwhelming discrepancy between supply and demand is academic; there are simply not enough Primary Care Physicians (PCPs).
- 51% fewer medical students are entering family practice - America Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP)
- PCPs are among the lowest paid doctors – Journal of the American Medical Academy
- As a result, by 2020 there will be 40,000+ (35%) fewer PCPs than required to adequately care for the nation’s population – AAFP 2006 Workforce Study
Without adequate supply of an appropriate medical workforce, the demand for medical care has increased dramatically.
- Between 2010 and 2050, there will twice as many 65 year olds and older in the U.S. – U.S. Census Bureau
- Fewer PCPs are accepting new Medicare patients – Texas Medical Association
- The Affordable Care Act is adding 25,000,000 or more newly insured patients to an already overburdened healthcare system – US Department of Health and Human Services
- Average wait times to see a PCP have increased to 21 days. – Merritt Hawkins and Assoc.
The increasing volume of patients has surpassed the capability of available practitioners to effectively care for the population. As a result, patients are directed from overcrowded doctors’ offices to the nearest emergency rooms for routine non-emergent care. Dr. David Seaberg, M.D., president of the American College of Emergency Physicians recently stated, the "Emergency departments have become a health care safety net for everyone” effectively transforming them into overcrowded after-hours clinics for patients who are unwilling to wait for an appointment with their PCP.
- ER visits have increased nearly 32% – Center for Disease Control (CDC)
- 235 patients are seen every minute in emergency rooms across the country - CDC
- 40% of the U.S. population visits an ER at least once a year – American Hospital Association (AMA)
- ER wait times average between 3-7 hours – Press Ganey and Associates
- Crowding within ERs is growing twice as fast as ER visits – Annals of Emergency Medicine (AEM)
- Recent studies demonstrate a correlation between ER wait times and an increased risk of dying - AEM
Over-utilization is yet another contributing factor causing strain on the system as a whole.
- Medicaid patients use the ER 3.5 X more than the privately insured with 947 of every 1,000 Medicaid patients using the ER at least once a year for routine non-emergent medical care - CDC
- Patients cannot be denied care for any reason at an ER that accepts Medicare/Medicaid – Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA)
The end result, the nation’s healthcare system has reached a tipping point and is experiencing widespread contraction of emergency medical services to the general public.
- The number of Hospital ERs has declined by 27% over the past two decades – AMA
- 1/3 of all remaining hospital ERs will close by 2020 – The Future Health Care in America.
While demand and inappropriate utilization of the ER has overwhelmed the infrastructure of the nation’s healthcare system, it has created a tremendous need and unique opportunity to deliver a highly desired service within a specific healthcare industry market segment in a retail for-profit environment.
The Freestanding Emergency Department (FSED) is best described as an ER without the hospital, but more importantly without the wait. FSEDs are fully functional and licensed emergency rooms capable of providing comprehensive general and emergent care for any medical condition to communities in a customer service, patient-centered environment near convenient retail locations. With the freedom to be inserted in strategically targeted neighborhoods with desirable demographics traditionally unavailable to large hospital developments, FSEDs are marketed and operated as a retail business. Focusing more on local markets rather than regional demographics (like traditional hospitals), FSEDs are capable of reaching deep into communities in order to deliver state of the art medical care to a targeted population segment.
“The National Healthcare Development Fund is the first asset- and operationally-based hedge fund of its kind designed specifically for the FSED retail healthcare industry. Created to take advantage of this emerging market, NHDF will offer a unique investment alternative while providing a profitable solution to the nation’s healthcare challenges,” said Ronnie Hale, portfolio manager of NHDF.
The Fund is currently raising $30M for six FSED facilities. NHDF plans on opening several $30M closed-end funds with up to six free standing emergency rooms in each.
About National Healthcare Development Fund
The National Healthcare Development Fund, LLC has been designed by its Florida-based parent company, America's ER, as a for-profit venture, co-investing with medical professionals to fill a void in retail medicine provision while offering a unique investment alternative. It will build and grow a series of Freestanding Emergency Room/Departments (FSEDs); these are structurally separate and legally distinct facilities not attached to hospitals, independently licensed and capable of receiving patients, providing life-saving emergency medical treatment and/or stabilization of any emergency condition to any patient requiring immediate medical care.
About Ronnie Hale
Ronnie Hale serves as the Fund Manager for the National Healthcare Development Fund, LLC. Mr. Hale’s prior experience and expertise as Fund Manager for Epic Capital Advisors, LLC, Chairman and CEO of YRSI Holdings, Inc and other market driven efforts conveys fund and asset management experience working with individual investors to large financial institutions to develop advanced portfolio management to help achieve specific goals for a solid financial future.
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