Caesars Leisure unveils plans for multimillion-dollar renovation

Caesars Entertainment on Tuesday announced plans for a multi-million dollar renovation of the original main entrance, main casino and porte-cochère at Caesars Palace on the Las Vegas Strip.

The company said in a press release that the project would begin in July and be completed by New Year’s Eve. The project will offer an “extravagant entrance area, newly designed play areas and a new lobby bar”. According to the company, the main entrance to the property will be completely rebuilt.

“Upon completion, guests will be greeted by a dramatic and soaring dome and barrel ceiling over a stunning 4.5-meter statue of Augustus Caesar,” the company said. “The project also includes two new state-of-the-art play pits that will flank the upgraded entrance, a beautiful new lobby bar, and a renovation of the property’s legendary vaulted table play floor.”

Sean McBurney, regional president of Caesars Entertainment, said the project involves “a complete redesign of our main entrance.”

“The complete remodeling of the main entrance to one of the world’s most famous travel destinations is not an easy task and we look forward to getting started and bringing our guests a stunning new visual reception,” said McBurney.

During construction July through December, there will be some changes to the property entrance at 3570 Las Vegas Blvd. South. They include:

– The main server on Las Vegas Boulevard South is only suitable for Caesars Rewards Diamond and Seven Star members.

– The Colosseum valet service (ground floor of the Caesars Palace car park on Frank Sinatra Drive) offers space for all valet guests.

– The pick-up and drop-off of ridesharing will be moved to the exit doors next to the Vanderpump Cocktail Garden.

– Express check-in / check-out kiosks for hotels will be set up at all available entrances.

Contact Glenn Puit via email at consequences @GlennatRJ on twitter.

Australia’s Covid restoration plans stay unsure attributable to delta variant

A person trains at the Sydney Opera House during a foggy start to the day on June 30, 2021 in Sydney, Australia. Lockdown restrictions continue as NSW health officials work to contain a growing Covid-19 cluster.

Brook Mitchell | Getty Images News | Getty Images

A recent spike in Covid cases has led Australian authorities to scramble to contain the Delta variant, which was first discovered in India.

The country has weathered the coronavirus pandemic relatively better than most, with fewer than 31,000 total cases due to strict rules on social distancing, border restrictions, contract tracking and bans.

Several major cities were blocked last week including Sydney – the capital of Australia’s most populous state, New South Wales and home to more than five million people.

On Monday, New South Wales reported 35 new local cases as Authorities take hold of it on individuals and companies for disregarding restrictions. Minister of State Gladys Berejiklian allegedly warned that the situation in the next few days would determine whether the two-week lockdown in Sydney is extended beyond July 9th.

Last week of Australia national cabinet agreed halve the number of international travelers allowed to enter the country by July 14 as part of a four-stage reconstruction plan. With a few exceptions, foreigners are usually denied entry.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said a testing program would allow some vaccinated travelers to self-isolate at home to ease pressure on Australia’s quarantine system.

Australia is still in the early stages of its plan, which emphasizes vaccines and social restrictions to minimize community transmission, according to the Cabinet. The next three phases would be re-vaccination, consolidation and finally the reopening of the borders.

Uncertainty remains

The federal recovery plan requires more precision, which would provide more security to Australian companies looking to reopen, according to Jennifer Westacott, CEO of the Business Council of Australia.

“We need some really clear goals. We need a really clear threshold. We need these to be realistic, ”she said on CNBC’s MondaySquawk box Asia.

“Companies can start planning. Airlines can start planning. Small businesses can start planning. We need a little more precision, ”she added.

Many companies, including farmers, rely on international workers. Longer border closings mean there will be a labor shortage at least until 2022 if the borders are to be reopened for the time being.

Westacott said Australia’s recovery plan should take a phased approach, allowing more skilled international workers to fill vacancies as vaccination rates rise.

“We can’t wait for professionals to come into the country in 2022,” she said, adding that such a delay means that Australia’s “capacity to ramp up is slowing, but also that companies are just doing nothing here.”

Slow vaccine rollout

Mixed messages around the AstraZeneca vaccine from the Australian government and the advisory council that advises the country’s health minister on vaccine issues have been “really problematic,” according to Archie Clements, vice-rector of the Faculty of Health at Curtin University.

“If you look at the vaccine adoption statistics, the vaccine surge slowed through June, and I think that’s mostly because of the mixed messages around AstraZeneca,” he told CNBC.Road signs Asia” On Monday.

The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization prefers that people under the age of 60 receive the Pfizer vaccine – which is in short supply – to avoid the risk of an extremely rare bleeding disorder associated with the use of AstraZeneca syringes. The government, meanwhile, says these people can choose AstraZeneca after consulting their doctors.

“The federal government should have been very supportive of AstraZeneca from the start, really should have sponsored it. It’s a very safe vaccine,” said Clements, pointing out that only a tiny number of people had severe reactions to the vaccination.

“We should encourage everyone to get vaccinated and take whatever vaccine they have, whether it’s AstraZeneca or Pfizer,” he said.

The Editorial Board: Poloncarz’s plans for a flood of federal cash are OK, however they need to goal for transformational | Editorial

Erie County’s executive director Mark C. Poloncarz plans to use a portion of the county’s historic federal grant to fund an expansion of the Buffalo and Erie County’s Botanical Gardens. While some of the plans are good, the county should aim for transformation.

Derek Gee / Buffalo News


Erie County’s executive director Mark Poloncarz has suggested several worthwhile ideas for investing the stream of federal dollars heading the county, but we hope he will reconsider some of the suggestions with this idea in mind: Coming 2111 – 90 years from now – What will county residents look to their ancestors with gratitude?

The county’s residents – and millions of Americans – feel it when they look at the projects that were carried out some 90 years ago when the federal government last opened their wallets. Then, during the Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt drove the building of parks, stadiums, courthouses, energy projects, and more to get desperate Americans to work while improving the country.

Then it is not. Our economy is buzzing again – hence inflation concerns – and President Biden is missing the compliant / interested Congress that FDR had. In addition, the money is distributed in different ways – there is no equivalent to the social security program in this federal package – and is conditional.

But the money is still a golden opportunity, and as Joseph Lorigo, minority leader of the county legislature, noted, it is not time to play “little ball”. When a Conservative Party member says this, you know there’s an appetite to think big.

The US $ 1.9 trillion bailout plan provides states, schools, and communities, including counties, historic levels of funding. Half of Erie County’s total profit of $ 178 million is already in place, with the remaining $ 89 million expected in the next year. In addition, the county expects an additional $ 34.4 million from Albany – money that was initially threatened and then restored.

Prince William plans a non-public household go to to Princess Diana | Leisure Information

Prince William takes his children to visit the statue of Princess Diana before it is given to the world.

The Duke of Cambridge and his younger brother Prince Harry will officially announce a memorial for the 60th moment of repentance on Thursday (01.07.21) in the Sanken Gardens in Kensington Palace. on site.

According to The Daily Telegraph, William and his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, will be last in line with Prince George (7), Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis (6) and 3 in the coming days. ..

In addition, Harry, who returned to the UK from the US last week without his wife Megan, Duchess of Sussex, or their children Archie (2 years old) and Lili (3 weeks), is planning a personal visit to the site after quarantine. The time is over, but not at the same time as his brother.

The statue is said to have arrived at Kensington Palace over the weekend and is now on a pedestal overlooking the garden, but is not visible through a large wooden container.

Created by sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley, the memorial commemorates the 20th anniversary of the Princess’ death in a car accident in Paris in 1997 to pay tribute to the positive impact she had on the world. Was entrusted.

The coronavirus pandemic has drastically reduced disclosure plans. The ceremony will be attended by William and Harry, as well as members of Diana’s family, including his brother Earl Charles Spencer, instead of the original 100 guests. Because I am there.

In addition, the media presence of this event is limited to a pool reporter and broadcaster.

Prince William is planning a private family visit to Princess Diana | Entertainment news

Source link Prince William is planning a private family visit to Princess Diana | Entertainment news

John Cena confirms plans for WWE comeback | Leisure

John Cena has confirmed his plans to return to the WWE.

The Hollywood superstar wrestler – who starred in blockbusters “F9” and “The Suicide Squad” this summer – has not been seen in a ring since joining a cinematic Firefly Fun House match on “WrestleMania 37” had competed against “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt. in April 2020.

However, he appeared on ‘The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon’ this week, addressing speculation about a possible return to the ring, saying, “Those rumors are true. I will definitely be back at WWE, I just don’t know when. “

The 44-year-old star sparked fan chats last month when he shared the company’s logo on Instagram, despite now claiming he just feels “nostalgic”.

He added, “Yeah, I posted that back in May. I was feeling pretty nostalgic about the WWE and just wanted to post the logo.

“Some people took it when I returned straight away, which they didn’t.

“I didn’t have my last game and I can’t wait to have my next game.”

Rumor has it that Cena will be lining up for a match against current Universal Champion Roman Reigns at next month’s SummerSlam event in Las Vegas.

The grappling icon responded to the reports recently, slamming both Cena and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson.

Reigns said: “It’s like a dream for many of our fans. It’s not a dream for his.” [fans]. I do that a lot with Dwayne and then with John Cena, these guys are doing very well.

“No question. I dont know. If I were these guys, I don’t know if I would come back and take care of myself.

“I’m a problem for everyone right now. If I were her I would stay on the set. I would keep pumping out these streaming service films. “

Meanwhile, Reign’s ‘special agent’ Paul Heyman had previously addressed the idea of ​​a dream game against The Rock.

He said “I applaud Dwayne The Rock Johnson for keeping his name in the media by expressing a desire to step into the ring with Roman Reigns, the number one box office attraction in sports, entertainment or sports entertainment.”

Cirque du Soleil Leisure Group Declares Extra Reopening Plans

INTERMISSION IS OVER, more tickets are available now!

Click to view the film break, the break is over and the campaign photos Here

MONTREAL, June 23, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group (“Cirque du Soleil” or “the Company”) is pleased to announce the long-awaited return of more touring and resident shows. Following the announcement of the reopening of two of his most iconic Las Vegas shows, “O” and Mystère, as well as the touring shows KOOZA in Punta Cana and LUZIA at the Royal Albert Hall, in London on April 21, 2021, Cirque du Soleil is proud to announce the addition of five new shows to its offering.

  • The Beatles LOVE, a creation of Cirque du Soleil and a coproduction with Apple Corps Ltd., is on display at The Mirage on. reopened August 26, 2021 continue with ticket sales June 24, 2021
  • Michael Jackson ONE by Cirque du Soleil, in collaboration with the Estate of Michael Jackson, will reopen its exclusive residence at Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino on August 19, 2021
  • joy, Cirque du Soleil emblematic production, is in Houston, Texas, under the Big Top at Sam Houston Race Park November 18, 2021
  • KOOZA, a Cirque du Soleil production acclaimed by more than eight million viewers and critics around the world, will be shown in the Old Port of Montreal from April 28, 2022

Additionally, Men group in blue, the partner show of the Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group, returns to Chicago and new York in full color beginning 18th of August and September 3, 2021, or with the Las Vegas Show opening June 24th.

Tickets are on sale now and are available at and

Today also marks the start of a celebratory movement for Cirque du Soleil to support the live entertainment industry and its professionals with the launch of its global #intermissionisover initiative. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the art ecosystem has suffered irreparable damage as the live events industry was one of the first to shut down. With this initiative, Cirque du Soleil aims to shed light on the resilience of artists and to maximize the visibility of the challenges that creative professionals are facing and facing in this time of revival.

Cirque du Soleil has recruited circus lovers and artists from around the world to get the word out and invite them to share on social media photos and videos of themselves at work or in their everyday lives as they return to the stages work towards. or what this moment means to you by using the hashtag #intermissionisover and proudly wearing the official Intermission is Over t-shirt. The campaign started today on Company website and social platforms.

“Today we all stand together to celebrate our industry coming back to life,” said Daniel Lamarre, President and CEO of Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group. “Let’s flood social platforms with messages of hope, strength and perseverance. We encourage you to join us and raise your voice to support your favorite artists, venues, friends and families who work in the live entertainment industry. The break is over! “

Fans are encouraged to join the movement by sharing their favorite show memories on social media using #IntermissionIsOver. The campaign t-shirt will be available from tomorrow for $ 35.00 on the Cirque du Soleil website.

“Cirque du Soleil thanks them wholeheartedly for their support from fellow players and professionals,” said Lamarre. “Now is the time to celebrate the resilience of our industry and the return of live entertainment.”

About Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group
The Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group is a leading global provider of live entertainment. In addition to producing world-famous circus arts shows, the Canadian organization brings its creative approach to a variety of forms of entertainment such as multimedia productions, immersive experiences, theme parks and special events. In addition to its various creations, the Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group aims to have a positive impact on people, communities and the planet with its most important tools: creativity and art. For more information on Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group, visit

SOURCE Cirque du Soleil

similar links

‘Transformative’ cash or simply plugging price range gaps? Native governments focus on federal stimulus plans

As billions of dollars in federal stimulus funds flow to state and local governments, those responsible are faced with an unusual mystery. How do you maximize a one-time gain when such a large portion of the municipal budget, from salaries to building maintenance, is used for ongoing expenses?

“This is a nice change,” said Hughey Newsome, chief financial officer of Wayne County, Michigan, in a speech at a Thursday briefing organized by the Volcker Alliance. “But the problem is, it’s a one-time inflow of money. We can’t give a raise. And if we make a capital investment, what about maintenance? We’d have to make sure we’re doing something in the operational budget to address the problem. “

Connected: Cities and towns are to receive $ 65 billion in incentives from Washington. Here’s what you should know about the American bailout plan

The COVID pandemic dealt a blow to budgets managed by Newsome and Mayor Kim Norton of Rochester, Minnesota, who also attended the conference.

Rochester’s economy depends on medical tourists who come to the famous Mayo Clinic – typically 3 million visitors a year, Mayor Norton said. At the start of the pandemic, the city cut $ 100 million from a $ 472 million budget but managed to avoid layoffs. Officials also delayed a tax hike and cut various user fees to help local businesses and households.

In Wayne County, home of Detroit, which had gone bankrupt just five years earlier, Newsome said officials immediately feared the worst. “We have started preparing for a recession like 2008-2009,” he said.

See: US local government employment is at a 19-year low

Even if this worst-case scenario didn’t happen, the county was still being beaten up. “When COVID hit, we were still faced with structural budget problems. We have curtailed income and are heavily dependent on property tax income, ”Newsome said.

That means Wayne County’s officials are putting a lot of thought into how to use the bailout money to balance the budget. The county is receiving $ 339 million – compared to a general fund budget of about $ 560 million – and is hoping to get a small portion of the money from the state as well. “We’re trying to be strategic because it’s transformative money,” Newsome said.

In contrast, Rochester will only receive $ 17 million direct, Mayor Norton noted, and “it will be spent to buffer the next five years.” City officials will prefer money for the next few years, which they expect will be the toughest, even as they prepare residents for a small tax hike.

The city continues to place great emphasis on helping those hardest hit during the pandemic, the reopening of the city, and economic development. Rather than using bailouts to directly support small businesses, Rochester is focusing on “getting people outside” to personally support businesses, Mayor Norton said.

Next read: The federal stimulus is a “lifeline” for communities hit by the Corona crisis, as the scars from 2008 remain

Deaf, blind potter plans ceramic-making marathon to lift cash for pottery faculty

A year ago this month, Kelvin Crosby was at rock bottom when the tiny bit of clear vision he still had disappeared. Then it got worse. Last fall, development funding for his startup ran out, leaving him with no income.

But with the help of handmade ceramics – a craft he learned in high school and resumed last December – Crosby, 33, is now back on top both emotionally and on TikTok, where he has more than 258,000 followers and 4 ,1 . has `millions of likes for his 6 month old TikTok channel DeafBlindPotter.

Up to 1.4 million people tune in every day to watch videos of the old town resident making cups and vases on a pottery wheel in his parents’ house in Clairemont. Using only his fingers, instinct, and memory as a guide, he spends 12-14 hours a day making up to 20 ceramic items that he regularly sells on his new website

Crosby said ceramic was his savior several times in his 20-year battle against Usher syndrome type II. He was born with severe hearing loss and began to lose his eyesight at the age of 13. These days, hearing aids help him hear and speak to people, but his vision is now reduced to what people would see if they looked at the world through a piece of waxed paper.

On June 27, Helen Keller’s birthday, Crosby is planning a benefit auction selling 100 of his latest ceramic pieces and running a pot marathon attempting to throw 50 cups in seven hours. He plans to use the event proceeds to raise funds for his next big idea, DeafBlindPotter training for people with intellectual disabilities.

Crosby said he felt it was his mission to teach others the healing properties of the art form.

“Through pottery I realized that I have so much to live with. And I realized that if I can help others live through their challenges, I will find joy in my life too, ”he said.

Kelvin Crosby is trimming the bottom of a coffee cup in his Clairemont ceramic studio on Friday June 4th.

Kelvin Crosby is trimming the bottom of a coffee cup in his Clairemont ceramics studio on Friday June 4th. Crosby is hard of hearing and legally blind, so he markets his ceramics under the new brand and TikTok channel DeafBlindPotter.

(Nelvin C. Cepeda / The San Diego Union-Tribune)

Crosby’s mother, Cherri Crosby, said her son was an active boy who played sports and never let his hearing impairment hold him back. But when Crosby was 13, the lights in the stadium went out during an evening football game and he suddenly realized he had no night vision. A few months later he was diagnosed with Usher Syndrome and told that he was gradually going to lose all of his eyesight. Crosby said he ignored the doctors and moved on.

“It was a journey for me. I didn’t accept it when I was young. I just lived my life, got my driver’s license and tried to forget about it, ”he said.

But at the age of 19 he lost his peripheral vision and had to give up his license. He attended a Bible school in the mountains of central California and tried to hide his vision loss from others until he tripped over a lawnmower and fell into the knife, then later stepped onto a chair in the cafeteria and suffered another serious fall.

“I started crying. It was an emotional moment. I found out that I am really deaf and blind, ”he said.

To adjust to his new life, he took classes at the Helen Keller National Center, where teachers asked Crosby if he had any hobbies. He remembered throwing pottery on a wheel in art class at University City High School. He later took classes at Mesa College and then learned glazing techniques at San Diego State University. He said it took a long time to accept the vision-related imperfections in his work.

“When I overcame the need to be perfect, I began to heal. Healing was the most important part of the ceramic process for me, ”he said.

In his mid-twenties, Crosby developed his artistic signature, which consists of three engraved horizontal rings on each piece he made. They stand for joy, perseverance and character, while the piece itself stands for hope.

A selection of Kelvin Crosby's coffee mugs with prices starting at $ 55.

A selection of Kelvin Crosby’s coffee mugs with prices starting at $ 55. All ceramic pieces of the hard of hearing and legally blind Crosby are engraved with three horizontal rings that represent joy, perseverance and character.

(Nelvin C. Cepeda / The San Diego Union-Tribune)

At the age of 28, Crosby lost the clarity in one of his eyes, which led him to put the pottery aside and focus on developing a new invention, Smart Guider, an illuminated walking stick for people with visual impairments. This product was in the final stages of development last year when funding dried up.

Around the same time, a family friend named Michaela Harding asked Crosby if he would teach her how to pottery. He offered to get his gear from the warehouse and give her lessons if she let him do a few laps to see what he could do without a clear view. The experience was a revelation.

“When I touched the clay, the healing started all over again. The next thing I knew I was making 10 pieces a day, ”he said.

Michaela’s older sister Natalie Harding – a graduate of SDSU Business School – saw Crosby’s work and together they came up with the idea of ​​developing a new pottery brand, DeafBlindPotter. Crosby built his own website and Harding started filming and posting videos on TikTok. The first video from December 1 received 100,000 views overnight and is now over 800,000. The third video has 1.4 million views.

Crosby’s videos, which he is now filming and posting himself, are a mixture of a pottery tutorial and cheerful motivational speeches. He starts with a pile of clay, which he floats up with water and then turns. He can’t see if the sound is centered on the wheel, but he can feel it when the jar wobbles in his hands. If the tip is crooked, he cuts it off. When it collapses, he shares it too, because everyone makes mistakes. He mixes cups with ceramic glaze with his fingers in order to feel the desired consistency, and with his bare hands he dips the vessels in glaze in order to measure the depth of the colored bands with his fingers. The process from the sludge to the finished vessel takes about three weeks.

Crosby’s “office” is a backyard shed in his parents’ Jerry and Cherri’s home. Crosby’s wife, Abigail, for 10 years, drops him off on his way to work six mornings a week. He calls Abigail his “skirt” because it keeps him on the floor when his entrepreneurial dreams get too carried away. But Cherri Crosby said she believes her son will be able to make his pottery school or any other dream come true.

“If anyone can, he can,” said Cherri. “It’s definitely an inspiring story. He feels very blessed and has the feeling that he can see better now that his eyes are not working properly. ”

In the weeks leading up to its June 27 auction, Crosby will be showing cups, bowls and vases on the DeafBlindPotter page a new e-commerce and interactive social media app called Auxxite. He will broadcast his pot marathon and the auction live on Auxxit. It is also streamed and his YouTube channel (, search for “DeafBlind Potter”). His website is

Kelvin Crosby will be working in his ceramics studio on Friday June 4th.

Kelvin Crosby will be working in his ceramics studio on Friday June 4th. Crosby starts between 12-20 pieces a day and then continues working on 50-150 other pieces that are at different stages in the process.

(Nelvin C. Cepeda / The San Diego Union-Tribune)

Leisure Information Roundup: Joyful ‘Within the Heights’ is love letter to Latinos in U.S.; Warner Bros. plans anime film in ‘Lord of the Rings’ collection and extra

The following is a summary of the latest entertainment news.

Joyful ‘In the Heights’ is a love letter to Latinos in U.S

It took 13 years to get from the stage to the big screen, but In the Heights is throwing a party and wants everyone to join in. Opening in theaters on Thursday and streaming on HBO max, Hollywood’s greatest Latino film in decades, tells the stories of the dreams and challenges of the largely immigrant community in Manhattan’s Washington Heights neighborhood.

Warner Bros. plans anime film in ‘Lord of the Rings’ series

The Warner bros. The film studio will produce an anime feature film set in the world of JRR Tolkien’s popular “Lord of the Rings” books, officials said Thursday. “The Lord of the Rings: The War of the Rohirrim” tells the story of a legendary battle that Middle earth in the years leading up to the events in the 2001 film “The Lord of the Rings”, a statement from the studio said. The new film will explore the fortress of Helms Deep and show the king of Rohan, helmet Hammer hand.

Kim Kardashian doesn’t regret the end of the reality series’ Keeping Up ”

After 14 years of drama, fashion, and family, “Keeping Up with the Kardashians,” the television series that Kim Kardashian and the familiar names of their siblings, bowed on Thursday with hugs, tears and gratitude. “I regret nothing. That was the best decade and a half of my life. ” Kim Kardashian says in the final.

One minute with: Boy George turns 60, new music and biopic

Culture Club front man Boy George is looking for an actor to play him in a new music biopic set to begin filming this summer. The British Singer, who will turn 60 next week, launched the social media call for auditions in April for the film “Karma Chameleon,” based on one of the band’s 1980s hits.

Actor Riz Ahmed leads to an offer to change the path Muslims seen in movies

British actor Rice Ahmed Thursday started an effort to improve the path Muslims are portrayed in films after a study shows they are barely seen and portrayed in a negative light when they appear. Ahmed, the “Sound of Metal” star and the first Muslim to get a best actor Oscar Nomination said the blueprint for Muslim Inclusion would provide funding and mentoring for Muslim Storyteller in the early stages of her career.

Placido Domingo honored in Spain after harassment allegations

Spanish opera star Placido Domingo was honored with an award at Madrid’s Teatro Real on Thursday, the day after receiving a standing ovation for his first performance in his home country since a union said he routinely molested women. Spain last year, Domingo’s planned performances in publicly funded theaters were canceled while the singer withdrew from shows after an investigation by the American Guild of Musical Artists found he had behaved inappropriately towards female performers.

(This story was not edited by Devdiscourse staff and is automatically generated from a syndicated feed.)

Who’s earning money in 2021? A have a look at hospitals and well being plans after Covid-19.

The Covid-19 pandemic rocked the health industry last year, but what can health systems and health plans expect financially?

Advisory Board‘s Natalie Trebes and Christopher Kerns sit down with Rachel Woods of Radio Advisory to discuss the financial outlook for health systems and health plans for the remainder of 2021 and beyond.

Read a slightly edited excerpt from the interview below and download the episode for the full interview.

Rachel Woods: The financial outlook is very different, not only because of the very specific conditions of the crisis we are going through, but also because one segment of the industry will not look like another. And even if you look at the same segments over the same time period, we still see differences. Christopher, how was the performance distribution on the hospital side of the industry?

Radio Advisory Playlist: Consequences with Financial Impact

Christopher Kerns: If we look at the numbers on sales development, margin performance and overall cash flow performance, we found that by the end of 2020 even the 25th percentile of high performers performed a little better than the year before, which I think surprised a lot of people, but also the 75th percentile of the performers.

So what we saw was a growing gap between the haves and the haves when it came to hospitals and health systems. The larger, financially stronger organizations thus fared better and extended their lead over smaller organizations.

Well, that’s not true across the board, there have been a number of large organizations that have struggled and there have been a number of smaller organizations that have thrived, but by and large we have seen an expansion of the performance in 2020 that we have have not seen several years.

Forest: And what is your prediction of how this gap will change over time? Do we expect it to continue expanding or maybe move back to where it was in 2019?

Kerns: I would expect at least some stability of this gap, if not an increase in the course of the year. And one of the main reasons for that is the huge cost increases we’ve seen down the line – labor, materials, technology – and these will hit disproportionately smaller businesses that either don’t have the financial cushion or, frankly, the flexibility to handle them To bear costs or to adopt different personnel, supply or technology models. So I think we will see a slightly larger expansion between the haves and the haves in the course of 2021, and probably through 2022 as well.

Forest: Natalie, is the problem of having and not having the same problem with health insurance?

Natalie Trebes: Yes, I don’t think it’s that extreme, or rather, I think there are the have-a-little and the have-many rather than the haves and the have-nots, but the big variable for the plans is theirs Enrollment mix. And I think it’s worth teasing this out based on the health plan type.

Vendor’s financial outlook: continued recovery in volume – but modest margin gains and large volatility across the board

The big national plans you see now are making headlines for their massive gains, there is a reason; With their different companies, they are particularly well positioned for such school shifts. Most of them have really sizable Medicaid businesses. So they were willing to take some of that decline in employer coverage right into their own business, rather than lose it to other plans. In my opinion Cigna and Centene are both interesting outliers there; Cigna is pretty heavily focused on the commercial space, Centene is pretty heavily focused on the Medicaid space. But in general, the extremely high profit margins may be causing a stir right now, but these are blind enrollment shifts. And again, they’ll pay back the discounts later.

Forest: What about plans that are a little smaller? I think like a regional blues plan, what do we see there?

Trebes: Well, in my opinion the blues plans are particularly special, they are usually very difficult in the employers’ area, both self-financed and fully financed. And I make this distinction because it’s worth noting that a fully funded business is more profitable than a self-funded business.

Therefore, a decline in employer coverage can be particularly painful for them compared to nationals, who are largely self-financed. And then again because of this mix, they had less opportunity to capture this new Medicaid registration.

And finally, they are deeply integrated into their local market. So any kind of regional variation of what was going on with the economy or Covid policy will hit them more dramatically. So if we look at the blues, there is a range of about 12 percentage points in the margins over the blues from minus 5% to 7% positive. So the haves and the have-nots really play out in the blues room.

Forest: And what about the even smaller plans, I think the local ones?

Results of the strategic planner survey 2021 2021

Trebes: This is where the differences in portfolio and geography become even more extreme, but on average these plans have tended to increase enrollment in the government sector, and particularly Medicaid and individuals.

I want to highlight the vendor sponsored local plans because they have this entire arm, the hospital system, that struggled at the start of the pandemic. And so I think a lot of them felt they really needed to focus on maintaining that low of care.

So they may not come out at the end of the year even if they’ve had growth at Medicaid or individuals in the same place as some of these national plans.

Forest: And all of this really comes back to back up our point that the headlines are on the attention grabbing story but won’t capture all of the differences between hospitals, between healthcare systems, or across the industry.

I’m surprised we haven’t talked about Medicare Advantage yet. And I think that’s because it’s really away from discussions that revolve around things like employment and insurance. What Happens in Medicare Advantage for Plans?

Trebes: So I think the really big story that is not talked about that much is the shifts. The growth of Medicare Advantage is really critical to plans right now for several reasons. It’s not tied to business cycles, so it’s a bit isolated from all of the rest of the churn we see everywhere else.

The margins are extremely high and it really is the only way that new growth plans have. So they get enrolled in Medicare Advantage by switching from traditional state Medicare to their own, while in other businesses they have to steal that market share from other plan competitors.