(Fierce Health Payer) New $24.2 million cuts to Pennsylvania seniors’ Medicare-funded nursing home care officially kicked-in this week as a result of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, signed into law earlier this year, the Alliance for Quality Nursing Home Care pointed out today. Nursing homes are technically referred to as skilled nursing facilities (SNFs).
The $24.2 million cut to Pennsylvania seniors’ Medicare-funded nursing home care associated with the new tax law will be fully phased-in by 2015 — and total $355.8 million nationally, according to Avalere, the independent health policy advisory firm.
The new Medicare cuts that kicked-in Monday 10/1 are part of broader $65 billion funding reductions over 10 years resulting from several different federal budgetary actions and regulatory changes made by Congress and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) since 2009, according to Avalere.
“As the first debate between President Obama and Mitt Romney is tonight, and as seniors’ nursing home funding has been a higher profile issue in this election than in the past, we hope to hear both candidates articulate ideas beyond just more cuts to Medicare and Medicaid — which has seemingly become the default governmental policy in regard to SNFs,” stated Alan G. Rosenbloom, President of the Alliance, which funded the Avalere data findings.
“No matter who eventually wins the White House and controls Congress, it will be imperative to pursue bigger-picture, systemic reforms that reduce costs, improve efficiency and optimize care quality once the election is over,” he said.
According to the Avalere data, the states with the biggest SNF Medicare cuts associated with the new tax law that went into effect 10/1 are Florida $60.5 million; Ohio $30.5 million; Illinois $28.8 million; Pennsylvania $24.2 million and North Carolina $22.6 million.