Archive for April 2013
Expanding Pennsylvania’s Medicaid program as provided for under the Affordable Care Act would increase federal spending in the state by $3.2 billion, save the state $220 million a year, and increase tax revenue another $215 million a year, according to a new analysis by the state’s Independent Fiscal Office. The projected savings and spending cover the years 2016 through 2021. The Independent Fiscal Office was created in 2010 to develop revenue projections and analyze fiscal, economic, and budget issues. Find links to the report, a press release, and a fact sheet here, on the Independent Fiscal Office’s web site.
Expanding Medicaid eligibility as envisioned in the Affordable Care Act would boost the state’s economy and save state government money, according to a new study. In the report “Economic and Fiscal Impact of Medicaid Expansion in Pennsylvania,” the Pennsylvania Economy League and the PA Health Funders Collaborative concluded that Medicaid expansion in the state would generate $4.4 billion in state government savings, bring $32 billion of new federal government money into the state’s economy, support as many as 40,000 new jobs and $3.6 billion in new tax revenue, and have a positive fiscal impact of more than $5 billion. The Safety-Net Association of Pennsylvania supports Medicaid expansion in the state. Read the entire report here, on the web site of … Read More
Pennsylvania’s nurses have rallied in Harrisburg for legislation to establish legal guidelines for nurse-to-patient staffing ratios in the state. The proposal supported by the Pennsylvania State Nurses Association calls for individual hospitals to establish their own guidelines on a unit-by-unit basis. The most recent nurse staffing bill in the Pennsylvania General Assembly was referred to the House Committee on Health in the fall of 2011. Read more about the nurses’ rally in Harrisburg and their objectives in this Central Penn Business Journal article.
The Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare (DPW) has updated its Medical Assistance fee-for-service fee schedule for a variety of physician services, podiatrist services, surgical services, and more. See a complete list of changes here, in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
The Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare has published a notice detailing its final allocations for FY 2013 for Medicaid disproportionate share hospital payments (Medicaid DSH) for OB/neonatal intensive care services, trauma services, burn centers, academic medical centers, critical access hospitals, and selected other limited groups of providers. Read the Pennsylvania Bulletin notice here.
The Internal Revenue Service has issued a proposed rule governing how non-profit hospitals will conduct future community health assessments. Such assessments are required of non-profit hospitals under the Affordable Care Act. The new regulation also includes guidelines for hospital billing practices when serving low-income patients. To learn more about the new regulation, find a copy of the regulation itself and an IRS fact sheet here, on the web site of the U.S. Treasury Department.
The Pennsylvania Health Law Project has published the March 2013 edition of Health Law PA News, its monthly newsletter.Features this month include articles about the governor’s proposed FY 2014, prospects for Medicaid expansion, coming Affordable Care Act changes, the final expansion of HealthChoices, and more. Find a link to the complete newsletter here, on the web site of the Pennsylvania Health Law Project.
Pennsylvania ranks 43rd of the 50 states in public health spending, according to a new report issued by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the organization Trust for America’s Health. While the median annual public health expenditure per capita nation-wide is $27, Pennsylvania spends only $14 per capita on public health. Public health encompasses such functions as protecting the water and food supplies, inspecting restaurants, promoting good health, guarding against environmental hazards, and tracking the spread of infectious diseases. Read more about the state’s role in public health and why Pennsylvania rates so poorly compared to other states in this Allentown Morning Call article.
Still rejecting expansion of the state’s Medicaid program as envisioned under the Affordable Care Act, Pennsylvania Tom Corbett has indicated that he may be interested in following the lead of a few other states in attempting to use federal Medicaid expansion money to purchase private health insurance for newly eligible Medicaid recipients. This news comes in the aftermath of the governor’s Washington, D.C. visit with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius during which the two officials discussed the governor’s reluctance to incur the future cost increases that he believes the state will face under Medicaid expansion. Recently, the governors of Arkansas, Ohio, and several other states have expressed interest in purchasing private insurance for new Medicaid recipients instead of … Read More
Participation in Pennsylvania’s Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) has fallen by nearly 100,000 children since mid-2011. Much of the decline is being attributed to a reduction in the state’s marketing of the program in recent years. Additional money for marketing is included in Governor Corbett’s proposed FY 2014 budget. Read more about the extent of the fall in CHIP enrollment and why it has occurred in this Philadelphia Inquirer article.