What the Cut, Cap, Balance Act means for hospitals

In an effort to curb national spending and control debt, the House yesterday passed the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act in a 234-190 vote, according to the Associated Press.  

Otherwise known to Democrats as the Duck, Dodge, and Dismantle bill, the White House Administration already has stated President Obama will veto the legislation if it reaches his desk, reports NPR.

According to the GOP website, the legislation, which aims to cut spending by $111 billion in fiscal year 2012, will not make any changes to Social Security or Medicare.

However, the Administration, which opposes the bill, said on its blog that the bill would cut Medicare and Social Security by 10 percent by the end of the decade. In addition, the bill would cut Medicaid by one-third over the decade, and by 50 percent by 2030, resulting in 36 million people losing Medicaid coverage, according to the blog.

If enacted, the bill could have repercussions for hospitals and health systems already struggling with reimbursements. For example, 64 percent of healthcare executives are extremely concerned and another 26.8 percent are concerned about aligning their hospitals' operating costs with post-reform reimbursement during the next three years, according to a U.S. News & World Report survey.

At the time of publication, there are 115 House cosponsors and 39 Senate cosponsors, according to CutCapAndBalance.com.

To learn more:
- read the AP article
- read the NPR article
- visit the GOP website
- here's the White House blog
- check out the healthcare exec survey
- visit CutCapAndBalance.com