FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Statement attributable to:
Bruce Siegel, MD, MPH
President and CEO
America’s Essential Hospitals
WASHINGTON—A letter to House leaders, signed by more than 300 lawmakers, clearly demonstrates strong bipartisan agreement in the House on the urgent need to delay by at least two years the looming deep cuts to Medicaid disproportionate share hospital (DSH) payments.
We applaud the letter’s organizers, Reps. Eliot Engel (D-NY) and Pete Olson (R-TX), and all their House colleagues for recognizing the severe threat posed by DSH payment cuts and standing up for patients, communities, and hospitals.
The nation’s essential hospitals depend on DSH support to help offset the high uncompensated costs of caring for many uninsured and underinsured patients. This commitment to mission leaves essential hospitals with average operating margins barely above break-even. Cuts of the magnitude scheduled this year and next—$4 billion and $8 billion, respectively—would devastate the safety net and jeopardize access to care in communities across the country.
We urge Congress to respond to this strongly bipartisan call by delaying the DSH cuts at least two years and working to ensure sustainable support for essential hospitals and their patients.
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About America’s Essential Hospitals
America’s Essential Hospitals is the leading champion for hospitals and health systems dedicated to high-quality care for all, including the most vulnerable. We support our 300 members with advocacy, policy development, research, and education. Communities depend on essential hospitals to provide specialized, lifesaving services; train the health care workforce; advance public health and health equity; and coordinate care. Essential hospitals innovate and adapt to lead the way to more effective and efficient care. Learn more at essentialhospitals.org.