Noteworthy News

Archive for December, 2011

 

Medicaid Cuts Proposed in Maine

Maine Governor Paul LePage has proposed cuts in MaineCare, the state’s Medicaid program, that would eliminate benefits for 65,000 of the state’s residents. The proposal calls for a combination of tightening eligibility requirements, eliminating some covered services, and removing some current recipients from the state’s Medicaid rolls. Such cuts would pose a challenge to the state’s urban safety-net hospitals, which would face the prospect of being called upon to care for newly uninsured patients who no longer have Medicaid coverage. Read more about the current situation in Maine in this article in the Bangor Daily News

NAUH Tackles Medicare Bad Debt Reimbursement Cut

In a message to Congress and a news release, NAUH has elaborated on its opposition to the reduction of Medicare bad debt reimbursement proposed in the Medicare doc fix bill (H.R. 3630). NAUH noted that while the overall amount of savings associated with the bad debt reimbursement cut – $14 billion – may seem modest, it would be absorbed primarily by urban safety-net hospitals and other hospitals like them that care for disproportionately large numbers of low-income, dually eligible (Medicare and Medicaid) seniors. The messages also note that most Medicare bad debt is virtually uncollectible and that urban safety-net hospitals [&hellip

NAUH Seeks Help From Congress

NAUH has asked Congress for protection from any Medicare and Medicaid cuts that are part of the doc fix solution. Last week, NAUH informed its members about a House proposal that called for reducing Medicare bad debt reimbursement, cutting future Medicaid disproportionate share payments (Medicaid DSH), and lowering Medicare outpatient payments to help prevent a cut in Medicare payments to physicians scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2012. NAUH also asked its members to contact their congressional delegation about the proposed cuts. Finally, NAUH sent a message to every member of Congress, asking them to protect urban safety-net hospitals [&hellip

Federal Government Launches Medicaid.gov Web Site

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has launched a new web site, Medicaid.gov, “devoted to the policies – and the people – of Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP),” according to the informational bulletin in which the site was announced. The site will include regulations, official letters to state Medicaid directors, informational bulletins, information about Medicaid and CHIP, information about events and teleconferences, updates on the Medicaid-related implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), information about waivers and the status of pending waiver applications, and more. The new site is up and running and can be [&hellip

Urban Areas Seek Adequate Congressional Representation

Already underrepresented in Congress, cities face new challenges as their states redraw congressional districts in time for next year’s elections. Cities currently face an uphill struggle in Congress:  while 28.2 percent of Americans live in urban areas, only 21.4 percent of congressional districts are primarily urban. The challenges run several ways.  Some cities would like to remain whole, represented entirely by one member of Congress, while others do not object to being divided so that they have several members who might help address their needs. Collectively, urban safety-net hospitals have a considerable stake in the both the quality and quantity [&hellip

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