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(AUSTIN, Texas – March 11, 2020) – Today, all 36 members of the Texas Congressional House delegation signed onto a bipartisan letter, expressing concern to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services about the expected impact of the proposed Medicaid Fiscal Accountability Rule on Texas hospitals, patients and the Texas economy. U.S. Reps. Michael Burgess (R-Lewisville), Marc Veasey (D-Fort Worth), Pete Olson (R-Sugar Land) and Lizzie Pannill Fletcher (D-Houston) co-led the effort.
The rule, proposed in November 2019, would severely limit states’ ability to draw down critical Medicaid funding, jeopardizing $11 billion in Texas hospitals’ annual Medicaid payments.
“We are so grateful that the delegation understands the devastating impact the rule will have on Texas hospitals and have amplified our collective voice to CMS,” said Ted Shaw, THA president/CEO. “If the rule is adopted, taxes will increase, rural hospitals will close, services will be cut, and access to care will suffer.”
Texas hospitals are working closely with stakeholders and state and federal leadership to have the rule withdrawn. THA submitted a letter to Gov. Greg Abbott and the Texas Congressional delegation, asking that they work with CMS to have the rule withdrawn. THA and a coalition of organizations representing Texas hospitals, health care providers and patients also submitted letters asking CMS to withdraw the rule.
Texas has worked with CMS over the years to identify acceptable methods of financing hospital payments. This rule would prohibit the existing approved methods of financing to ultimately limit Medicaid spending. Hospitals nationwide use Medicaid payments to ensure access to essential care for Medicaid enrollees and the uninsured.
Texas has one of the country’s strongest economies, yet no other state has more residents without health insurance. Texas also leads the nation in rural hospital closures. Texans need a strong health care infrastructure that provides financial stability, increases in health care coverage and a fair regulatory environment, so hospitals can deliver the best possible care.
Additional information, including a copy of the letter, are available from www.tha.org/MFAR.
Founded in 1930, the Texas Hospital Association is the leadership organization and principal advocate for the state’s hospitals and health care systems. Based in Austin, THA enhances its members’ abilities to improve accessibility, quality and cost-effectiveness of health care for all Texans. One of the largest hospital associations in the country, THA represents 452 of the state’s non-federal general and specialty hospitals and health care systems, which employ some 400,000 health care professionals statewide. Learn more about THA at www.tha.org or follow THA on Twitter at http://twitter.com/texashospitals.