Wednesday, May 4, 2011

State budget update: nursing homes will see 6.5 percent funding cut

The House and Senate finalized the budget Tuesday. Nursing homes will see a 6.5 percent cut ($187.5 million) to Medicaid funding, which amounts to a reduction of $288,932 annually per facility or $12.07 per Medicaid patient day. The budget conforming bill is expected to include language to give providers some ability to offset these reductions with staffing flexibility to meet the needs of residents. With nearly 70 percent of nursing homes' operating costs paying for the people delivering resident quality care, facilities will have a difficult time recouping from this level of funding cut - forty percent of nursing homes statewide will begin operating with negative margins. Some facilities stand to lose as much as $1.2 million. FHCA has developed documents estimating the impact of the 6.5 percent funding cut, including facility details by House and Senate district and summaries by county, which you can access by clicking here.

With the close of the 2011 session just a few days away, FHCA is still working vigorously to advance tort reform as another means to help facilities reduce their costs. On Monday, the full House passed HB 661 by Reps. Matt Gaetz and Shawn Harrison. FHCA is still hopeful that the Senate companion, SB 1396, can be withdrawn from committee and voted on the Senate floor. Please continue with your calls and emails to Senators and ask them to support HB 661/SB 1396 with NO amendments. You can use the alert we’ve drafted to send the message by clicking here. Lawsuits do nothing to improve quality care, and every dollar not spent on litigation can be used for the health care needs of patients and residents.

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