Hospitals lower state Medicaid tax fee

Hospitals in New Hampshire have cut their state tax bill by some $50 million during the month of November, angering state lawmakers, reports the Concord Monitor.

The hospitals are following federal rather than state guidelines to determine their share of a tax liability for receiving federal Medicaid funds--a practice that could be emulated by hospitals in other states. The change in New Hampshire apparently came in response to recent steep cuts in state funding for Medicaid programs.

"Reports of a potential shortfall in the New Hampshire Medicaid Enhancement Tax should come as no surprise to anyone," New Hampshire Hospital Association President Steve Ahnen said in a statement. Earlier this year, the association asked the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for guidance regarding which specific hospital services are considered taxable under federal rules. The Association warned lawmakers in August that state revenue projections were overly optimistic as a result.

In addition to remitting smaller tax amounts in recent months, many hospitals have filed amended state tax returns to recoup past payments, notes the Monitor.

A meeting has been set up next week between members of the New Hampshire legislature and state tax and healthcare officials to discuss how to proceed.

For more information
- Read the Concord Monitor article