MSMA Legislative Alert
In 19 Days Medicaid Payments Cease
In less than three weeks the new fiscal year begins and lawmakers have yet to fund Medicaid. The Medicaid program often gets caught in a political battle in Jackson, but the battle has never lasted this long or been so heated. Lawmakers have reached an impasse on the budget because the House leadership wants to restrict Medicaid from making policy changes that “hurt” the hospitals. These restrictions are not good for physicians. The most contingent restriction is that there shall be no cuts to inpatient and outpatient hospital payments, or allowable days or volumes, as long as the hospital assessment is in effect.
The overall Medicaid budget for medical services is approximately $3 billion, and inpatient/outpatient services represent $800 million of that. If a 10% cut was needed to maintain the program, under this restriction then $80 million would have to be retrieved by cutting other providers and services deeper.
The bottom line is there will have to be some form a hospital assessment reinstated before Medicaid can be fully funded. Exempting hospitals from cuts would result in physicians taking a deeper cut if the budget falls short.
Call to Action:
· FUND MEDICAID BEFORE JULY 1
· DO NOT SUPPORT EXEMPTING HOSPITALS FROM CUTS