February 09, 2016 | Chip Kahn
President Obama’s FY17 budget misses the mark. It does offer hope for sustaining and expanding coverage gains. And it lifts the Medicare sequestration - but nullifies any benefit by replacing it with warmed over cuts that would threaten patient access to hospital care for low income Americans and seniors.
Masked as reform are arbitrary, destabilizing payment cuts to Medicare bad debt, which covers the cost-sharing low income seniors cannot afford, Medicaid disproportionate share, graduate medical education, inpatient rehabilitation facilities, and long term care hospitals.
Hospitals have already endured $158 billion in cuts imposed since 2010, $35 billion enacted last year alone. Enough is enough. Further cuts will undermine access to care and impede hospital progress towards improving quality and performance.