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Health News Florida

Cancer Hospitals' HQ moving to Boca

(Editor's note: This article in its original form contained two errors: its form of ownership was misstated and the wrong name was given for its president and CEO. Those errors have been corrected below.)

Boca Raton is replacing suburban Chicago as the corporate home of Cancer Treatment Centers of America, a for-profit company that focuses on wealthy suburbs and advertises heavily on TV.

Its target audience is cancer patients who have a less-than-rosy  prognosis but aren't ready to call hospice, who want "world-class options and care that never quits," as its copyright slogan says.

It appears that only about 225 top  employees will move, leaving hundreds behind in Illinois, according to Modern Healthcare magazine. The state of Illinois had offered what  it called an "aggressive" package of income tax breaks for the company to stay put.

The company appears to have received a substantial amount of Florida taxpayers' money in the form of tax incentives, but it's not clear how much. The company's President and CEO Gerard van Grinsven thanked the state, the city of Boca Raton and Palm Beach County in a press release from Gov. Rick Scott's office.

The Palm Beach County Commission earlier this month approved $2.4 million in state and local incentives to an undisclosed health care company, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported. It is not clear whether any or all of that is all for the Cancer Treatment of America's corporate headquarters.

The specific location of the corporate offices hasn’t been determined, the Scott press release said. Officials cited Florida’s “favorable business climate” and proximity to airports as reasons behind the move.

None of the five hospitals that the company runs is in Florida. The facilities are in Atlanta, Chicago, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Tulsa.

The company, which uses CTCA as its market identifier, is bringing a bit of baggage with it.  Late last year, a Modern Healthcare investigation found that three of the CTCA hospitals had billed Medicare for an extraordinary number of “outlier” payments.

Hospitals can file for outlier payments on a case if the patient is unusually complex or has catastrophic complications, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.

A November report from the HHS Office of the Inspector General said the payments warrant extra scrutiny.