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Erin Delaney

Legislative Affairs Associate Erin Delaney is the legislative affairs associate at America's Essential Hospitals.

Senate lawmakers continue to negotiate the next round of legislation to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, America's Essential Hospitals, in a letter to congressional leadership, shared its priorities for the next COVID-19 supplemental bill.

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House Democratic leaders seek to bolster economic aid and unemployment benefits, extend community health center funding, and increase workplace protections for health care workers and first responders.

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House Democratic leaders are developing a fourth COVID-19 supplemental funding bill on the heels of a $2 trillion aid package the president signed last week. This fourth legislative package could include measures to enhance protections for health care workers.

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After two failed votes, senators continue negotiations on a $1.6 trillion funding package to boost the economy and improve access to care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, House Democratic leadership unveiled competing legislation to provide relief.

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This second supplemental legislative package to address the new coronavirus would increase the federal medical assistance percentage (FMAP) to states, require insurance coverage of COVID-19 diagnostic tests and visits, extend paid leave, and more.

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Both chambers passed a bill providing more than $8 billion to combat the new coronavirus; House leaders now are discussing legislation to mitigate economic impacts associated with the virus. A Senate letter calling to incorporate social determinants into hospital star ratings closes tomorrow.

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Congressional leaders are holding several hearings to inform their COVID-19 response and negotiating legislation that could provide up to $8 billion in emergency supplemental funding to respond to the outbreak.

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HHS Secretary Alex Azar will discuss the president's proposed fiscal year 2021 budget at several congressional hearings. A bipartisan Senate letter calls for incorporating social determinants into star ratings. A new association work group focuses on the Medicaid Fiscal Accountability Regulation.

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The Ways and Means legislation would preserve the ability of providers and health plans to negotiate payment rates through independent dispute resolution, while the Education and Labor plan would impose federal benchmark rates for charges of more than $750.

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In its bipartisan proposal on surprise medical bills, the House Committee on Ways and Means would preserve the ability of providers and health plans to negotiate the payment rate for out-of-network care. Also, the president releases his FY 2021 budget plan, including $920 billion in Medicaid cuts.

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As the impeachment trial ends, House and Senate leaders will transition back to their legislative priorities, including reducing out-of-pocket health care costs.

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America's Essential Hospitals encourages members to share their concerns about the Medicaid Fiscal Accountability Regulation with Congress and CMS. Meanwhile, the House returns to health care business after a one-week recess, and the Senate impeachment trial continues.

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The Senate trial begins this week on two articles of impeachment against President Trump, for obstruction of Congress and abuse of power.

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America's Essential Hospitals this week is closely following congressional health care committee efforts to develop a robust legislative package to stop impending cuts to Medicaid disproportionate share hospital funding and extend funding for several expiring health care programs.

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After delaying Medicaid DSH cuts and extending funding for other health care programs by five additional months, congressional leaders are expected to leverage the new May 22 expiration date to advance bills to lower drug prices and protect patients from surprise medical bills.

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Congress approved and the president signed a fiscal year 2020 spending package that delays through May 22, 2020, a $4 billion cut to Medicaid disproportionate share hospital payments.

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The package, expected to become law, would delay a $4 billion cut to Medicaid disproportionate share hospital payments through May 22, 2020. It does not include proposals to reduce surprise medical bills or prescription drug prices.

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Bipartisan Senate committee leaders released drug pricing legislation that includes a provision to eliminate $12 billion of Medicaid disproportionate share hospital cuts over two years. House and Senate committees announced bipartisan legislation to end surprise billing.

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Lawmakers have three weeks to agree on funding for the federal government and various health care programs, including Medicaid disproportionate share hospital payments. The House resumes its impeachment investigation with a Judiciary Committee hearing.

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The latest continuing resolution, which funds the government through Dec. 20, will give Congress more time to negotiate a longer-term agreement on government spending and relief from impending cuts to Medicaid disproportionate share hospital payments.

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The House is scheduled to vote on a continuing resolution that would extend federal funding through Dec. 20 and further delay a scheduled $4 billion cut to Medicaid disproportionate share hospital (DSH) payments; House impeachment hearings continue.

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While lawmakers continue negotiations on fiscal year 2020 spending bills and prescription drug pricing legislation, committees will hold hearings on electronic cigarette use, state efforts to undermine reproductive health care, and the presidential impeachment inquiry.

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Twelve spending bills must advance through Congress and be signed by the president by Nov. 21 to fully fund the federal government for fiscal year 2020.

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A House vote on the Lower Drug Costs Now Act of 2019, scheduled for this week, has been postponed to allot more time for the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to score the bill.

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Essential hospital leaders will meet with lawmakers this week at our fall Policy Assembly amid government funding talks and drug pricing negotiations.

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Negotiations continue on funding the federal government — and averting Medicaid DSH cuts — while House committees hold hearings and markups on the Lower Drug Costs Now Act.

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Congress will focus on the looming deadline to fund the federal government and address the $4 billion cut to Medicaid disproportionate share hospital funding.

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A continuing resolution to fund the federal government, including the disproportionate share hospital program, through Nov. 21 heads to the Senate; House Speaker Pelosi introduces a drug pricing bill.

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DSH cuts will start Oct. 1 without congressional action; House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is expected to introduce a drug pricing proposal; the House considers a stopgap government funding measure.

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Lawmakers must act before Oct. 1 to stop the $4 billion cut to Medicaid disproportionate share hospital payments, extend expiring health care programs, and fund government operations for fiscal year 2020.

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The bipartisan deal averts a $125 billion cut to federal discretionary spending, raises spending caps by $324 billion, and partially offsets costs by extending a 2 percent cut to Medicare provider payments,

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