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CHICAGO, November 26, 2003—As the healthcare field continues to change, so do the top issues confronting hospitals. For the second year in a row, ACHE's "Top Issues Confronting Hospitals" survey reveals the issues of greatest concern for hospital CEOs. The survey asked respondents to rank the three most pressing issues affecting their hospitals; within each of the three issues, respondents were also asked to identify specific areas of concern.

Reimbursement issues are hospital CEOs' number one most concerning issue, compared with 2002, when personnel shortages topped the list. Specifically, the percentage of respondents choosing reimbursement as one of their top three concerns rose from 65 percent in 2002 to 73 percent in 2003. Meanwhile, 58 percent of respondents chose personnel shortages as one of their top three concerns in 2003, compared with 71 percent in 2002. Concern about capacity and care for the uninsured also rose in the 2003 survey, while malpractice insurance and governmental mandates moved to sixth and seventh in the list. Physician/hospital relations remained the fifth most concerning issue for the second year in a row.

Click here for more results from the survey, which was sent on October 3, 2003, to 730 hospital CEOs, 230 (32 percent) of whom responded.