Will the New Spending Bill Once Again Target Medicare?

As Congress works on a federal spending bill for the remainder of 2018, hospitals are concerned that negotiations over how to raise budget caps may result in further Medicare cuts as Congress seeks the funding sources to pay for any new spending.

Ever since the 2013 sequester which set into law across-the-board budget cuts, Congress has agreed on a few occasions to raise the budget caps. Negotiations are now underway to raise the cap once again with Republicans generally calling for more Defense spending and Democrats seeking more domestic, non-defense spending.

Last week, The Coalition to Protect America's Health Care, which MHA supports, said the desire by many in Congress and the Administration to raise the spending caps for some programs, could in turn trigger deep cuts to Medicare payments to hospitals to pay for those increases.  Why is the Coalition concerned? Because using Medicare as a piggybank is a common occurrence in D.C.  Since 2010, federal hospital funding has been cut by $149 billion.

The Coalition this week is running this 30-second TV spot on major cable channels.