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Bob Thompson, Chairman|Margaret A. Murray, Chief Executive Officer
Deficit Reduction Must Protect and Improve Care Coordination and Quality forMedicaid Enrollees
ACAP urges Members of Congress to protect and improve the vital safety net role of Medicaid aspart of the
Budget Control Act’s
deficit reduction process.
ACAP asks Congress to:
expansion of capitated care management systems
for all Medicaidpopulations. Federal savings of $40 billion over ten years are possible.2.
automatically to increase Federal matching rates whenthe State or Federal economy is in recession.3.
Allow states to provide financial incentives and disincentives
for enrollees to seek care inappropriate settings, including the use of co-pays for higher-income enrollees who seek non-emergency care in an emergency room.4.
Maintain Medicaid and CHIP
“maintenance of effort”
Preserve the Federal/State Medicaid partnership
by maintaining the federal entitlement and
opposing a Medicaid “block grant”
as proposed by the House of Representatives.6.
Maintain federal protections that guarantee access to care,
including requirements that healthplans be paid in an actuarially-sound manner.
BackgroundMedicaid serves 53 million Americans.
It is a vital safety net for seniors, people with disabilities,pregnant women, and children.
Far from being “welfare,” Medicaid directly or indirectly impacts the lives
of 150 million Americans. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, more than one-half of allAmericans received health coverage, long
term care, or assistance with paying Medicare premiums fromMedicaid (20 percent), or had a friend or family member who has received such assistance (31 percent).
Medicaid is a smart investment.
It protects public and private resources, and helps local and stateeconomies. Without Medicaid, the uninsured poor would place an even greater burden on an already-strained health care system, particularly emergency rooms. Likewise, Medicaid supports valuableprevention, immunization and screening efforts that preserve public health and prevent costlier ailmentsdown the road.
Medicaid supports hospitals, nursing homes and health care professionals, all of whom are vital components of the economic stability of local communities.
Congress and the Administration
must not allow “state flexibility” to become a euphemism for
that will eliminate needed benefits or indiscriminately throw the elderly, persons withdisabilities, pregnant women, and children off the program. Giving states some true flexibility in designingand operating Medicaid is desirable, but
must not undermine the basic commitment thatAmerica has made to care for its most vulnerable citizens.The deliberations of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction present a unique opportunity toreduce spending while improving and protecting the Medicaid program and the health of its enrollees.