May 09,2012

Press Contact:

Julia Lawless, Antonia Ferrier, 202.224.4515

Hatch on Proposed Temporary Medicaid Reimbursement Rates

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee, today expressed concern over the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed rule that would allow physicians providing services to Medicaid beneficiaries to be reimbursed at Medicare levels for 2013 and 2014.

“It’s nonsensical to think a temporary, two-year bump in pay will actually attract and retain doctors to the Medicaid program unless the White House thinks Congress will keep extending these higher payment rates in perpetuity.  Every year, Congress has to stop Medicare physician payment rate cuts and this proposed regulation will now create the same dilemma under the Medicaid program.   When that rate drops back down after 2014, what will happen to the health care Medicaid beneficiaries receive? Or is this just another budget gimmick to hide the true cost of the President’s $2.6 trillion health law?”

The $2.6 trillion health law mandated a temporary increase to bring Medicaid reimbursement rates in line with those under the Medicare program. Under the proposed rule, reimbursement rates for physicians providing primary-care services to Medicaid beneficiaries would drop back down after 2014.