Entries by Joseph Steinbock

Medicaid Transportation Services in Jeopardy?

The White House has proposed removing non-emergency transportation from the list of mandatory Medicaid benefits. The proposed FY 2020 budget released last week explained that Statute allows, but does not require, States to provide non-emergency medical transportation (NEMT).  Instead, these services were made mandatory Medicaid benefits by regulation.  Further, a Government Accountability Office study found […]

MACPAC Makes DSH, UPL Recommendations

Changes could come in Medicaid DSH and UPL payments if new MACPAC recommendations are adopted. Last week the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission released its annual report to Congress, with most of the report focusing on its analysis and recommendations for policy updates involving Medicaid disproportionate share hospital payments (Medicaid DSH) and Medicaid […]

More Potential Budget Obstacles for Private Safety-Net Hospitals

Part two of the Trump administration’s proposed FY 2020 budget brought more potential bad news for private safety-net hospitals.   Last week’s “lean budget” released by the White House included a number of challenges for private safety-net hospitals and this week’s release, intended to fill in some of the blanks that last week’s document left, […]

“Rejected” Medicaid Reforms May Resurface

Partial Medicaid expansion, desired by some Republican governors but rejected by the Trump administration last year, may not be so rejected after all. At least not according to Seema Verma, administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which oversees the federal Medicaid program. In a recent interview, Verma said the administration is reconsidering […]

MedPAC Offers Recommendations on FY 2020 Rates, More

Last week the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission released its annual report to Congress.  Included in this report are MedPAC’s Medicare rate recommendations for the coming year.  They are: hospital inpatient rates – a two percent increase hospital outpatient rates – a two percent increase physician and other health professional services rates – no update skilled […]

HHS Talking to States About Medicaid Block Grants

In the absence of legislation to turn Medicaid into a block grant program, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is talking to some states about granting waivers that permit them – voluntarily – to turn their individual Medicaid programs into block grants. HHS Secretary Alex Azar acknowledged this last week during a hearing […]

“Medicaid Shortfall” Definition Changing?

The Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission last week discussed possible changes in how “Medicaid shortfall” is defined for the purpose of determining how much Medicaid disproportionate share money (Medicaid DSH) safety-net hospitals should receive. The discussion came in the wake of a court decision last year that ruled that third-party payments toward Medicaid-covered […]

Trump Budget Brings Bad News for Private Safety-Net Hospitals

The FY 2020 federal budget proposed by the Trump administration this week would bring pain for private safety-net hospitals if adopted. Highlights of the proposed spending plan include: More than $135 billion in cuts in Medicare uncompensated care payments (Medicare DSH) and Medicare bad debt reimbursement over the next 10 years. Continued extension of Medicare […]

MACPAC Meets

The Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission met for two days last week in Washington, D.C. The following is MACPAC’s own summary of the sessions. MACPAC looked ahead to its June 2019 report to Congress on the initial day of the March 2019 Commission meeting. In the morning, sessions focused on potential recommendations to […]