Representative Boehner Praised for Helping Lead Effort in Congress to Stop Medicare Cuts from Going into Effect

Saturday, August 2, 2008 General News J E 4

House Minority Leader Helps Lead Successful Bipartisan Effort to Stop $45.4 Million Ohio Medicare Cut

WASHINGTON, Aug. 1 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Two of the nation's leading long term care organizations today praised House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) for helping to lead a successful bipartisan effort in Congress to protect Ohio seniors by preventing the Bush Administration from moving forward with a Medicare regulation that would have cut Medicare-funded nursing home care by $5 billion over the next five years, and $770 million in fiscal year 2009. Representative Boehner's action ensures Ohio seniors will be protected from cuts of $45.4 million in the year ahead.

"The bottom-line news from yesterday's announcement that the regulation will not proceed as planned is that Medicare beneficiaries in Ohio are the big winners, and will continue to benefit from ready access to the high quality, post-acute care they need and deserve," stated Bruce Yarwood, President and CEO of AHCA. "Congressman Boehner worked extremely effectively with congressional leaders of both parties and the Administration to ensure Ohio seniors' ongoing care needs will be protected."

Alan G. Rosenbloom, President of the Alliance for Quality Nursing Home Care, stated, "From a policy standpoint, this is an outstanding development in terms of both meeting seniors' changing health care needs, and doing so in a manner that uses Medicare funds most efficiently. The House Minority Leader deserves enormous credit for working in an intelligent, effective, bipartisan manner to help achieve the positive results which will now benefit Ohio's seniors."

Yarwood and Rosenbloom also noted the Bush Administration's planned Medicare cuts not only threatened Ohio seniors' access to quality health care throughout the state, but would have also negatively impacted the local economy by threatening the jobs of key caregivers in facilities throughout the state, especially in Ohio's rural areas.

The national long term care leaders also noted that Medicare cuts from Washington would have had a severely negative impact on the strength and viability of Ohio's Medicaid program. Because nursing homes rely on Medicare to make up for chronic underfunding by the Medicaid program -- an average of $13 per day for every Medicaid beneficiary in nursing homes nationwide -- it was critically important to ensure Medicare reimbursements remain steady and consistent, they said.

SOURCE American Health Care Association


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