The MHA visited Capitol Hill in Washington DC last week to emphasize year-end priorities to Michigan’s congressional delegation.
The MHA and several hospital representatives met with House members and with U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow to deliver the message that pending Medicare cuts are unsustainable and unacceptable. Memorial Healthcare CEO Brian Long joined the group to request prompt action to prevent the forthcoming 4% Statutory Pay-As-You-Go (PAYGO) sequester and extend or make permanent the low-volume adjustment and the Medicare-dependent hospital programs. Without an extension, these critical rural programs expire Dec. 16 and will reduce reimbursement to Michigan hospitals by more than $12 million annually. The MHA also pushed for making permanent the expansion of telehealth services and extending the hospital-at-home program. The members of the Michigan congressional delegation were receptive to these requests and generally expressed optimism that the pending Medicare reductions would be paused or even repealed.
The MHA also took part in both the American Hospital Association and Children’s Hospital Association advocacy briefings, which concurrently took place in DC. Both associations discussed their central priorities as the lame duck session nears its end and a new Congress prepares to enter Capitol Hill.
Members with questions about end of year priorities or future advocacy days on Capitol Hill may contact Laura Appel at the MHA.