National Governors Association Again Lobbies Congress for Increased Federal Medicaid Reimbursements
Representatives of the National Governors Association yesterday asked Congress for "short-term relief from rapidly rising Medicaid costs," the Washington Post reports. Facing Medicaid costs that have been rising by an average of 13% nationwide, Michigan Gov. John Engler (R) and Kentucky Gov. Paul Patton (D), NGA chair and vice chair, respectively, repeated their call for a 1% increase in federal Medicaid reimbursements to each state over the next 18 months. They said they support a bill (S 2570) to that effect sponsored by Sens. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine). No such bill has been introduced in the House, and "prospects do not appear bright in either chamber," the Post reports (Washington Post, 6/5). The governors yesterday also released an updated report that found that states face a budget shortfall of $40 billion to $50 billion in the fiscal year that ends June 30 and that they have used $15 billion in "rainy day funds" and an additional $15 billion in cuts in an attempt to close the spending gap (Neikirk, Chicago Tribune, 6/5).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.