Obamacare Threatens Charitable Hospitals

From Dr. Jerry Newcombe:

It’s a good thing our current administration wasn’t around in the 4th century when St. Basil of Caesarea invented what writer George Grant calls “the first non-ambulatory hospital” in history, i.e., a medical facility with beds.

Pouring forth the love of Jesus Christ, the good saint who lived in the Mediterranean port city northwest of Jerusalem is credited with this humanitarian development of the institution of the hospital. Roberto Margotta, author of “The Story of Medicine,” says of Basil’s hospital, that the “rule of love” prevailed, with the “care and comfort of the sick.”

The longest lasting hospital that still operates (no pun intended) is Hotel Dieu (i.e., God Hospital) in Paris founded in the year of our Lord 600. It borders Notre Dame Cathedral.

In the New World, the oldest, still-operating medical facility is Jesus of Nazareth Hospital in Mexico City, founded in 1524.

In many other places and times, Christians of various stripes started all sorts of hospitals and health clinics. That’s true across the globe. Even to this day, many hospitals show their Christian origin in their very name. Good Samaritan. Holy Cross. Christ. Baptist. Bethesda. St. Mary’s.

Some hospitals are named after St. Luke (e.g., St. Luke Presbyterian, Rush St. Luke) because the author of the third Gospel and Acts was a doctor. He was even Paul’s doctor.

Many people of good will, regardless of their religious convictions (or the lack thereof), are involved in the healing of the sick. Christian charity (that is, voluntary love for the Lord and for others) was what historically motivated so many of the great developments in organized health care in the first place, and that remains true to some degree today.

It’s disturbing, then, to learn that the government’s takeover of the health care system will likely punish charity hospitals in the future. In short, Obamacare could be bad for our health.

A headline in “The Daily Caller” notes, “Obamacare installs new scrutiny, fines for charitable hospitals that treat uninsured people” (8/8/13). Patrick Hawley reports: “Charitable hospitals that treat uninsured Americans will be subjected to new levels of scrutiny of their nonprofit status and could face sizable new fines under Obamacare.”

The fines could be as stiff as $50,000 “if they fail to meet bureaucrats’ standards,” he writes.

Hawley adds, “A new provision in Section 501 of the Internal Revenue Code, which takes effect under Obamacare, sets new standards of review and installs new financial penalties for tax-exempt charitable hospitals, which devote a minimum amount of their expenses to treat uninsured poor people. Approximately 60 percent of American hospitals are currently nonprofit.”

I thought Obamacare was supposedly about providing health care for the poor and uninsured. It seems to me this is more about government control than it is about helping people.

Dr. David Stevens is the president of the Christian Medical and Dental Associations, located in Bristol, Tennessee. They represent about 16,500 members and are in contact regularly with over 30,000 physicians and dentists. I’ve interviewed him a few times for radio and TV.

He once told me, “All three of my children work with a health care ministry in inner-city Memphis. They’re motivated by their faith, and they sacrifice every day, not only at their work place; but they live [there], right with the people that they serve because of their faith.”

But enter Obamacare with its stifling regulations in the health care field, and such good works could be ultimately discouraged to satisfy the bureaucracy.

Dr. Stevens observes: “…if ever we needed Christians in health care, it’s now; but unfortunately, we’re putting a system into place that ultimately could drive them out of health care.” For example, if laws forced them to violate their conscience.

He laments, “That’s scary, especially as we look at the bioethical issues we’re facing on physician-assisted suicide, embryonic stem cell research, abortion, and the list just goes on and on—where having a doctor that shares your Christian worldview is going to become more and more important in beginning-of-life care and in end-of-life care.”

Stevens adds, “We need health care reform, but we need to attack the real problem—out-of- control costs—not open the doors for millions and millions of more people at this point to enter the system and increase costs even more. We need to deal with access, but if we can get costs under control, it’s going to be cheaper for everyone, the insured now and those that can be insured when the cost is lower.”

Driving conscientious Christians out of health care is the worst thing that could happen to that field, yet it seems that Obamacare regulations could end up doing just that. Ironically, at the same time many are losing their jobs because of Obamacare and may need charitable health care.

I remember in the comedy record, “The First Family” in the early 1960s, where comedian Vaughn Meader did a masterful job imitating JFK. At a mock press conference, a reporter asks “JFK” what his solution would be to the coming social security crisis. Meader’s reply as JFK was, “Try to stay young.” Applying the same humorous logic to today: What’s the solution to health care crisis, should Obamacare go fully into effect? “Don’t get sick.”

Sadly, more government bureaucracy in the health care field may ultimately drive out that spirit which gave birth to much of it in the first place.


Dr. Jerry Newcombe is a key archivist of the D. James Kennedy Legacy Library and a Christian TV producer. He has also written or co-written 23 books, including The Book That Made America: How the Bible Formed Our Nation and (with D. James Kennedy), What If Jesus Had Never Been Born? His views are his own. www.jerrynewcombe.com



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31 comments on “Obamacare Threatens Charitable Hospitals
  1. Evermyrtle says:

    Obamacare is not there to assist anybody but to destroy the insurance companies along with the entire US of A, to give the country to the Muslims led by our Muslim acting president. They are doing a wonderful job of that assisted by all the anti-GOD persons that he has appoint to every post available.If there is a loyal servant to free America he has been threatened until afraid to speak up against the enemy.

    Matthew 24:8-13
    8. All these are the beginning of sorrows.
    9. Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.
    10. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another and shall hate one another.
    11. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
    12. And because iniquity shall abound the love of many shall was cold.
    13. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved

    John 15: 17-21
    17. These things I command you, that ye love one another.
    18. If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.
    19. If ye were of the world,the world would love his own> but because ye are not of the world , but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.
    20. Remember the Word that I said unto you, the servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.
    21. But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not HIM that sent me.

    John 16:1-2
    1. These things have I spoken unto you that ye should not be offended.
    2. The shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that doeth GOD service. (Is that why the Isalam Jesus will kill every Christian when he returns?)

    • Evermyrtle says:

      Obamacare is not an insurance , it is tool against Americans, first Conservative Christians and the elderly and the ones who love America as a free America..

    • Mary Crum says:

      As usual you wrote a true, beautiful, inspiring, and encouraging response. Thank you.

      • Evermyrtle says:

        Thank you Mary, it is nice hearing from you, again. We need you to help, by posting as a Christian, we need HIS people speaking up, more than ever before, as the Christian stand weakens. HIS people should take a stand for HIM, even though it is becoming more dangerous every day, to do so..

    • Mr Bob says:

      Of course!!! I mean the VERY LAST thing Jesus would EVER want is that poor people have access to health care!

      • Evermyrtle says:

        Boobie, I thought you said there is no JESUS, therefore according to you HE will not do anything, because HE is not real! When did you change your mind? Or is it that You can’t make up your mind? Or is it that you simply are a hypocrite? There is one thing I do know about this situation, it is that if you did not believe your would not be fighting HIM so hard. Most days you are cutting HIM down, that means you do believe HE is alive and well but you only hate HIM because HE IS PERFECT AS THE SON OF GOD AND THE ONLY SAVIOR OF ALL WHO WANT HIM AND ACCEPT HIM AS SUCH

        You know, HE died on the cross to save you from your sins, all you have to d is accept HIM as your SAVIOR, and you, too can be saved..

        A last word:You make a perfect troll, you have had good training as such, it is not too late to change and become a good Christian man. Again, believe and accept HIM as your Savior.

  2. Elton Robb says:

    They worship death. A majority of Americans worship death.

    • Mr Bob says:

      Christianity is a blood cult that worships death! The idea of Redemption is deliverance of sinners from the penalty of their sins through the murder of their deity against whom they sinned!

  3. Frank Conover says:

    Obama is and never was good for the American people as a president.Those who voted for this guy are looking for the free hand outs he promised. He is a commie muslim and can not be trusted.

  4. ABUTOM says:


  5. Seraphim Hanisch says:

    Obama is a “little Antichrist” – he’s not the main one – everyone will like him, but this one is sure trying to do everything he can to box Christians into a corner.

    • Frank Carson says:

      It’s not only the Low Life Obama, we can include the George Soros and all the wealthy U.S. Traitors (Head of Prudential Insurance ), Bill Gates, etc.,etc.

  6. ot says:

    When he is in HELL he will wish for some charity, but too late.

    • Mr Bob says:

      If hell exists, there’s so many scientists there by now it’s probably got air conditioning!

  7. Jsmith says:

    Keep in mind the objective of Obamacare: a single-payer, government run medical system. This is an intermediate step. You can expect in the future that the government will run all hospitals — assuming Obama, Hairy Reed and Queen Nancy get what they want.

  8. Spencer Downs says:

    You know, this is very frustrating! For the past three years, we’ve heard from many different sources how bad Obamacare is and how much it is going to cost in terms of money, jobs, government control, adequate health care, etc. etc. etc. This once great nation is going down the tube because the administration is totally corrupt and the people in Congress can’t get their act together! They are intellectually dishonest, inept politicians and not Statesmen! In recent bills, the amount of “pork” added was unbelievable! These people obviously believe it is “business as usual”! If Barack Obama is constitutionally ineligible, impeach him! If he has committed crimes and misdemeanors, impeach him! If he has misused his power, impeach him! But for God’s sake, don’t keep harping about how bad this is and how bad that is! Do something right for a change!!

    • minnie says:

      Congress has their act together, they have planned to impeach obama BUT Leader harry reid in the senate is the Leader of the senate and is control by democrats, They will not pass the impeachment leader no matter what bho does, they will support him to them staying in power is more important than the American people. We all have to wait until election 2014 hopefully the Republican can gain some seats and control the senate. and also keep control of congress. That is the only way possible. Its the democrats senates fault bho is still in power.

  9. Mark says:

    No comment yet from Mr Bob on how great it is that Obamacare is getting rid of all the faith-based hospitals? Must be getting today’s talking points from the Democrat National Committee, aka the Politburo.


  10. poptoy1949 says:

    Obama has one thing in mind…Destroy the United States of America. It has been his goal since day one. He will do it by any means necessary. This is just one way of many. It is time he is stopped. But no one in Washington will do a thing to stop him. And remember good people we still have 3 1/2 years of this village idiot left to go. GOD help us.

  11. Monte says:

    Exactly! God help us! This once great nation can still be great again, we must not give up! We are still the beacon of freedom for all seekers from around the globe. But we must find a way to rid our selves of the destructive forces ruining our country calling themselves ‘our leaders’. Vote them out!!!!! We must stand together and vote them out once and for all. But it goes much deeper than that. Our ideals, our basic philosophies and principals are in question here….charitable hospitals being targeted is a prime example of this…leave them alone! Stand up America! Stand up for ourselves!!! Together one person at time CAN make a difference…it starts with YOU! Wake up!!! Our way of life, our country is at stake here!!! May God help those who help themselves too… God bless you and America!

  12. Carl Collicott says:

    There is no individual mandate. The 501(c)3 reference is Title 26 income Taxes,section 3121(L) foreign non-profit organization
    Freedom not to participate
    On September 7, 1916, Congress passed the Public Health Service Act, [Public Law 410] 58 Stat. 682(pertinent part reproduced below). The very title was designed to deceive, it had nothing to do with the public, and it was an *elective form of insurance. The reason no one is required to participate in the Health Care Act, as stated in section 1555, is simply the Act amends the Public Health Service Act, the original law was not repealed, so any amendment would also have to be voluntary.
    Section 1001 (pertinent part reproduced below), clearly states the PPACA is an amendment to the Public Health Service Act, for the most part, it’s an International Agreement for Foreigners, and government owned corporation employers.
    google; Title 5 U.S.C. chapter 89 group health care.
    The agency posed to enforce the Act, is the Public Health Service, their record of healthcare is recorded in the Tuskegee Syphilis experiment.

    One Hundred Eleventh Congress
    of the
    United States of America
    Begun and held at the City of Washington on Tuesday,
    the fifth day of January, two thousand and ten
    An Act
    Entitled The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
    Public Law 111-148 ( available on line)
    Subtitle A—Immediate Improvements in Health Care Coverage for All Americans
    *Sec. 1001. Amendments to the Public Health Service Act.
    Sec. 1555. Freedom not to participate in Federal health insurance programs.

    No individual, company, business, nonprofit entity, or health insurance issuer offering group or individual health insurance coverage shall be required to participate in any Federal health insurance program created under this Act (or any amendments made by this Act), or in any Federal health insurance program expanded by this Act (or any such amendments), and there shall be no penalty or fine imposed upon any such issuer for choosing not to participate in such programs.
    Public Health Service Act (the original law)(maritime law)

    July 1, 1944 [H.R. 4624] | [Public Law 410] 58 Stat. 682
    SEC. 1.
    Titles I to V, inclusive, of the Act may be cited as the “Public Health Service Act”.
    SEC. 605. (a) Section 7 of the Act of September 7, 1916, entitled “An Act to provide compensation for employees of the United States suffering injuries while in the performance of their duties, and for other purposes”, as amended (U.S.C., 1940 edition, title 5, sec. 757), is amended by changing the period at the end thereof to a colon and adding the following: “Provided, That whenever any person is entitled to receive any benefits under this Act by reason of his injury, or by reason of the death of an employee, as defined in section 40, and is also entitled to receive from the United States any payments or benefits (other than the proceeds of any insurance policy), by reason of such injury or death under any other Act of Congress, because of service by him (or in the case of death, by the deceased) as an employee, as so defined, such person shall *elect which benefits he shall receive. Such election shall be made within one year after the injury or death, or such further time as the Commission may for good cause allow, and when made shall be irrevocable unless otherwise provided by law.”
    “it great when everyone agrees”

  13. kmilliorn says:

    Obamacare has produced a Catch-22 for charitable hospitals. Under COBRA-EMTALA (the Emergency Medical Treatment & Actve Labor Act), ALL hospitals MUST provide at least a screening examination (including appropriate lab & imaging studies) to ANY patient who comes in complaining of an emergency medical condition or any woman in possible active labor. Many of these patients require further treatment, surgery, or hospitalization AND lack of insurance is NOT a valid reason for transfer to another facility. Thus charitable hospitals HAVE NO CHOICE about caring for these patients, but are now going to be subjected to onerous additional bureaucratic requirements to justify their doing so–to the very government that requires them to do so! All the personnel time & activity spent generating the reports for the IRS will, of course, come off the hospitals’ frequently shaky bottom line & many may close. Government doesn’t get much more stupid than this.

  14. JJ says:

    Obamacare threatens every single American – period!!! There is so little that is good about this law. It is about the Democrat party taking power over all Americans. This is about putting insurance companies out of business and Americans dependent on the government!!!

  15. Bill Rummel says:

    I grew up right down the road from the Carroll Meader farm (Vaughn’s father) in the 1940s, 50s, and 1960s in Waterville, Maine. Ironically, the farm is gone, but sitting atop where it was is a shopping plaza…….JFK Mall!

  16. peter1589 says:

    This isn’t about government control. This is about the attempts by the antiChrist to destroy the Catholic Church, to kill that which cannot be killed even by 500 years of protestant relativism. Bankrupt the Church, it no longer can function, states the logic. Kill the priests, no Eucharist without which there is no salvation. Thus the priestly vocation crisis since Vatican II. Pope Francis is the last pope, and the chastisement promised by the Blessed Virgin at Akita, Medjugorje, Garabandol and other such apparitions is soon coming. The Blessed Virgin told the late Fr. Gobbi back in the 1980’s that Seattle is soon to be toast because of the sympathy certain priests and bishops hold for homosexuals. The time is short. Come home to the only Church Christ and the Holy Ghost instituted at Pentecost. God bless you.

  17. Maxine says:

    Our Catholic hospital has already been sold to an insurance company. The nuns were going to stay, but because Highmark could not or would not guarantee that they would be inline with the Catholic beliefs about abortion, the nuns opted out. I wonder how many more cities across the nation has had this happen?

  18. Paul Brown says:

    Has anyone ever called this muslim pig, ” Charitable” ? He could care less about charities of any kind, because if people give to the charity, then they don’t have the money to give to this pig, the IRS can’t take more of you cash for him.

  19. Robert Mezzanotti says:

    Maybe we need God to show Obama what sickness is really like for him and his family.And then maybe he might wake up, And also the same for the so call Christian people in Congress to feel the wrath of God on them and their family by making them lose their money and get sick and find out what the elderly are finding out when your doctor tells you he is dropping your insurance.

  20. mari says:

    It is hard to condemn Christians as all that is evil if they are doing good. The propaganda machine will grind up all that is good and call it evil while declaring all that is evil as good. God help us.

  21. v steve says:

    Only a fool would sign/vote for a document/bill before they read it. Even the fine print.

  22. Mr Bob says:

    Most hospitals in this country are not-for-profit tax exempt institutions & are deemed to be charities and are exempt from federal, state and local taxes, raise money through tax exempt bond offerings and receive charitable contributions that are tax deductible to the donors. Under the traditional definition of charity, helping the poor and needy, most charitable hospitals fail miserably in accomplishing a charitable mission. Even under the modern definition of charity, most charitable hospitals do not provide benefits equal to the value of the tax exemptions they receive. Most charitable hospitals do very little to provide health care for the un- and under-insured. No hospitals should be tax exempt. Hospitals are not really charities, (notwithstanding the current legal definition of charity), because they derive their income by charging and receiving payment from most if not all of their patients.

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