fah hospital policy blog

Perspectives on health policy affecting America’s hospitals and the patients we serve.

FAH Applauds Passage of H.R. 1295 Removing Medicare Sequester Offset

June 11, 2015 | FAH Hospital Policy Blog Team

Category: Legislation, Medicare, Sequester

Today, the FAH submitted a letter to House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) urging the passage of the Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015 (H.R. 1295). The FAH applauds the House of Representatives for passing this legislation this afternoon. The House Leadership made the critically important decision to remove the cuts to the Medicare program as a means to pay for aspects of the legislation.

As the letter explains:

“The FAH strongly supports Section 603 of the Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015 (H.R. 1295) which would strike the Medicare sequester as an offset to this legislation. This is an important fix which would strengthen the Medicare program for seniors and the hospitals they depend upon.

Further, should H.R. 1295 pass the House, we applaud the recently announced agreement that provides for the privileged consideration of this fix in the Senate. We respectfully urge the Congress to move forward with this entire agreement which would ensure swift consideration in the Senate.”

Cumulative Medicare cuts to hospitals, which now total $142 billion since 2010, jeopardize the ability of hospitals to deliver the care seniors expect and deserve. These cuts also contribute to record-low Medicare margins for 2015, which are projected to reach -9%. As the letter explains,

“Additional Medicare cuts to hospitals are ill-advised, bad public policy, and sets a terrible precedent.”

Fortunately, the House acted to ensure seniors will have access to the care they need. The FAH applauds the House leadership for removing the Medicare sequester cut increase and extension, and protecting millions of American seniors.