Advocates for skilled nursing operators started a counteroffensive Monday in Washington to fight bad-debt provisions of a new House GOP spending bill. Introduced Friday, the bill asks skilled nursing operators to absorb more than $4.5 billion of $10 billion in bad debt losses.
Many long-term care providers feel they earned at least a moral victory late last month when the president's so-called debt-reduction "super committee" could not agree on recommendations. That meant nothing worse than automatic 2% across-the-board cuts could be imposed. Now, there may be a reprieve on the horizon from even the 2% cuts.
Providers, and the rest of the country, will learn Wednesday whether President Obama's congressional "super committee" has agreed on a combination of funding cuts and tax increases that total $1.2 trillion. Technically called the President's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility, it has been extremely tight-lipped about its work of several months. If the bipartisan mix of Senate and House members can't agree on recommendations, automatic 2% funding cuts will begin in 2013. Fearful that any alternative could be worse, many providers are hoping for the 2% across-the-board cuts, and some have already factored them into future planning.