Providers to Congress: Leave Medicaid alone

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Providers sent a clear message to Congress this week: Medicaid cuts could hamper their efforts at providing quality long-term care.

The American Health Care Association (AHCA), along with the Alzheimer's Association, AARP, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging (AAHSA), the National Association for Home Care & Hospice and the ARC of the United States, sent a letter to members of the House and Senate Budget Committees arguing against the proposed $60 billion in cuts in fiscal year 2006 as well as caps aimed at shifting costs from long-term care.

"We are writing to urge you to reject Medicaid cuts and caps that shift cost and risk to vulnerable Americans needing long-term care and to commit to reinvest efficiency savings back into the program to help offset the growing and undeniable long term care cost challenges confronting Medicaid," they said in their letter, which was sent Tuesday.

Its timing coincided with the National Governors Association annual meeting. Medicaid reform has was one of the key issues before the governors this week.