“Congress has to get moving on the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).
On Friday of this week, Congressional advisors from MedPAC will urge the rollback of SGR’s automatic physician payment cuts. Their counterparts at MACPAC will ask Congress to keep bipartisan CHIP funded for all of the 8 million kids that depend on it.
Yet at this moment, all signs point to another short-term SGR patch, paid for by yet another year of meat-ax sequestration cuts. Moreover, partisan maneuvering is threatening to derail action on CHIP, which would leave kids’ coverage in limbo and huge holes in state budgets.
It doesn’t have to be this way. Billions in savings can be found by curbing waste in Medicare—without shifting costs to beneficiaries or slashing provider reimbursement across the board. Reauthorization of CHIP is also entirely possible—without squeezing kids coverage. But both will require bipartisan dialogue and cooperation. NCHC is prepared to work with Congressional leaders to identify smart savings.
In the next two years, our divided government will have to grapple seriously with the challenge of rising health costs. Responsibly addressing SGR and CHIP would be a great way to start.”
See full press release: https://www.nchc.org/the-time-is-now-for-action-on-sgr-and-chip/