Once again, Congress is looking at skilled nursing care cuts to finance provisions in other areas of the budget. In an effort to “solve” the student loan crisis, Congress wants to reduce the Medicaid provider assessment threshold from 6 to 5.5 percent and apply the savings to subsidize the Stafford loan interest rates. Provider assessments are a key tool for states, including Florida, as they attempt to recover from budget crises and make up for the continuous underfunding of Medicaid. If this provision passes, Florida's skilled nursing facilities would see a $867 million cut to Medicaid funding over the next 10 years. Facilities are already struggling under previous reductions as a result of a productivity adjustment to pay for health care reform; then another two percent through sequestration; followed immediately by reducing bad debt to pay for the doc fix.
Please take action today, as Congress may move legislation containing this proposal as early as next week. Help us send an important message to Congress that the proposed reduction would cause more harm than good, as high-quality care for seniors and individuals with disabilities, as well as the jobs of their dedicated caregivers, would be put at risk. Click here to enter your zip code and send an e-mail to your Member of Congress today.