AHCA warns that the federal state fiscal relief is set to expire

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The American Health Care Association has called on Congress to intervene before federal fiscal relief for states expires on Wednesday.

Congress passed legislation in 2003 that sent $20 billion in fiscal relief to the states -- $10 billion in Medicaid funds through a temporary increase in the federal medical assistance percentage, and another $10 billion in revenue sharing.

"In just two days, the state fiscal relief that has been a necessary and effective lifeline allowing seniors to maintain access to quality healthcare services will end," said Charles H. Roadman II, president and CEO of AHCA in a release on Monday. "We are concerned a number of state economies remain too fragile to guarantee our frail, elderly and disabled are protected."  

A June study by National Conference of State Legislatures indicated 33 states still project budget gaps for FY 2005, saying they face an aggregate budget gap of $36 billion.