FAH Hospital Policy Blog

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

FAH Policy Blog Team

ICYMI: JAMA Report says Medicare for All Would Hit Hospitals Hard

Leads to Massive Funding Cuts, Extensive Job Losses

An article published this week in The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) highlights the devastating effects of Medicare for All on community hospitals, which include massive cuts to financial resources and extensive job losses.

The authors looked at what would happen to hospital funding if a Medicare for All system extended the current fee schedule to all patients.

Among the eye-opening findings:

  • A loss of $150 billion per year to the nation’s hospitals.
  • An estimated 1.5 million in hospital clinical and administrative jobs could be cut.

If payment rates for Medicare were raised to 100% of cost – as some plans have proposed – the JAMA article says “annual Medicare spending by the federal government would increase by $40.7 billion and annual Medicaid spending by the federal and state governments would increase by $25.6 billion.”

A price tag that would have to be absorbed by American families through massive tax increases.

This is the latest report to show the destructive effects of a single-payer system or public option on hospitals and access to care.

Last month, FAH and AHA released a report showing the impact a Medicare public option could have on the ability of hospitals and health systems to continue to provide access to high-quality care to their patients and communities. The study found that such a proposal, which would create a government-run Medicare-like health plan on the individual exchange, would lead to the largest ever cut to hospitals – nearly $800 billion over 10 years. This sort of plan would also be particularly disruptive to the employer-sponsored health insurance market.