Proposed rule would cut Medicaid reimbursements to facilities

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A new rule proposed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid would not allow state Medicaid reimbursements to healthcare providers operated by local government, such as nursing homes, to exceed actual costs.

Under the rule, healthcare providers, rather than state and local governments, would have to receive all Medicaid reimbursements to which they are entitled. The rule would save the federal government an estimated $3.9 million over five years, CMS said. It would help prohibit healthcare providers from receiving state Medicaid reimbursements that exceed the actual cost of services and stop states from receiving extra matching funds from the federal government as a result, CMS said.

Local governments or hospital districts nationwide operate 1,153 hospitals, 822 nursing homes and 113 intermediate care centers for the mentally retarded. The rule would affect the ability of states to fund their Medicaid programs and make it harder for people to access needed healthcare services, according to Rachel Klein, deputy director of health policy at Families USA.