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After House Committee Chairs Meet on Health Reform, Long Term Care Leaders Say Rescinding Bush-Era Medicare Regulation Critical to Protecting Jobs, Preserving Quality Eldercare
Date:6/10/2009

ary to them," said Rosenbloom.

Yarwood and Rosenbloom said the Bush Medicare regulation included in the Obama FY 2010 budget would be especially damaging to seniors in the many states across the nation who have already endured, or will soon face, substantial Medicaid funding cuts as a result of recent state legislative actions. As has been corroborated by independent research time and again, they said, Medicare and Medicaid funding are inextricably linked, and the combination of cuts to both programs squeezes facilities in a manner harmful to Medicare beneficiaries' care needs, local economies, and the caregiver jobs base.

A new National Governors' Association (NGA) State Budget Update underscores this concern, and warns "stark declines in current revenues are forcing states in all regions to consider another round of budget cuts before fiscal 2009 concludes on June 30." The long term care leaders said this is yet one more reason the Obama Administration and Congress must cautiously consider how any federal cut to seniors' Medicare funding under the auspices of broader "reform" could intensify the negative impact of state Medicaid cuts already jeopardizing older Americans' access to quality long term care and services.

U.S. Representatives Shelley Berkley (D-NV), Earl Pomeroy (D-ND) and Shelly Moore Capito (R-WV) are leading a bipartisan letter effort in the U.S. House urging HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to reject the Obama Administration's proposed Medicare regulation. An excerpt of the letter (available in its entirety at www.ahca.org and www.aqnhc.org) is as follows:

"We are deeply concerned that access to high-quality skilled nursing care for America's seniors will be threatened if the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) moves forward with an administrative pro
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SOURCE American Health Care Association
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