They may not agree on much these days, but both Republicans and Democrats are expressing skepticism about a proposed federal rule that may cost long-term care providers billions in Medicaid funding and negatively affect supplemental payments.
Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have expressed concerns about the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services’ Medicaid Fiscal Accountability Regulation, The Hill reported.
“The Medicaid fiscal accountability rule is a concern to my governor, and the stakeholders are worried the rule as proposed could lead to hospital closures, problems with access to care and threaten the safety net,” Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) reportedly said during a hearing last week.
Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) added that the rule could “dramatically affect Medicaid eligibility” and “wreak havoc on budgets in red states and blue states all across the country,” the news report stated.
A bipartisan group of lawmakers last week called on CMS to withdraw or revise the rule, arguing it could be costly for continuing care retirement communities and their residents.
The American Health Care Association and LeadingAge also have demanded that the regulation be withdrawn, stating it has serious implications for providers’ supplemental payments and could eliminate up to $50 billion from the Medicaid program annually.
Last week, CMS Administrator Seema Verma defended the rule against a host of criticism. In a blog post, Verma wrote that the rule — which targets supplemental payments — is “not intended to reduce Medicaid payments.”
She added that it’s aimed at “strengthening accountability and increasing transparency to ensure that every Medicaid dollar is claimed and spent in accordance with federal law while supporting the interests of Medicaid recipients.”