The heat is on both literally and figuratively as we move into the height of summer. Healthcare providers have sweated out weeks of speculation over proposed healthcare cuts to reduce the federal budget deficit, with President Obama and Congress sparring over adjustments to entitlement programs. In return for administration concessions over cuts, Republicans are being pressured to accept tax hikes.
In an article in the The New York Times, Obama administration officials and Republican negotiators said funds can be taken from healthcare providers, including nursing homes, without directly imposing new costs on beneficiaries or dramatically changing either Medicare or Medicaid.
That remains to be seen. Representatives from the nursing home and hospital industries have been vocal in objecting to any deal that would jeopardize funding to these programs as lawmakers grapple over possible solutions to the debt ceiling issue which must be resolved by early August. LeadingAge’s Larry Minnix has pleaded with his association’s membership to urge representatives to reject deficit-reduction measures that would hurt Medicaid, offering a link to its Contact Congress system.