JLF Triangle Blog

“they are advocating for their own demise”

Carolina Journal’s Dan Way reports here on Gov.-Elect Pat McCrory’s upcoming decisions on how the state will respond to Obamacare mandates. Twila Brase, president of the Citizens Council for Health Freedom, is telling state executives to think very, very carefully before deciding on how to proceed. Gov. Perdue has signed North Carolina up to work with the federal government, but McCrory will have to decide whether to proceed that way or not. And what about hospitals and Obamacare?

 

Indeed, Don Dalton, vice president of public relations for the North Carolina Hospital Association, earlier toldCarolina Journal that government insurance plans can pose financial challenges for hospitals.

“For hospitals, our reimbursement has historically run over the last few years somewhere below 80 percent, somewhere in the mid- to upper 70s of our costs … to deliver treatment,” Dalton said. 

“Even at those reimbursement rates, that gap has to be filled by someone. The reduction in government payments for both Medicaid and Medicare over the last 14, 15 years, has been borne by the business community and it is a hidden tax” under the Balanced Budget Act of 1997, Dalton said. 

Obamacare promises to pay 100 percent of Medicaid costs for new enrollees for three years, scaling back incrementally to 90 percent over a 10-year period, but Brase calls that a ruse.

“Hospitals are just dreaming if they think the feds are going to keep up this kind of funding long-term,” Brase said. “The realities of the federal budget are that it is in the red by trillions of dollars.” 

And she warned of other dangers inherent in the health care reform law.

“Eventually, the hospitals will find that they, too, will be told exactly what they can and can’t do, that they, too, will be government contractors,” Brase said. Laws that now require treatment of all comers to emergency rooms regardless of ability to pay will expand to other hospital services, she predicted. 

“So the hospitals, when they advocate for more people to be in a government program, they are advocating for their own demise,” Brase said. 

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