Sequester Punishes State's Skilled Nursing Facilities
28 Feb, 2013, 06:27 ET
COLUMBUS, Ohio, Feb. 28, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As the hours wind down to the start of sequestration under the federal budget legislation, Ohio's skilled nursing facilities are bracing for another in a series of cuts.
"The sequester will cost skilled nursing facilities in this state another $37.3 million," said Peter Van Runkle, Executive Director of the Ohio Health Care Association (OHCA), the state's largest long-term care association. Sequestration includes a 2% reduction in Medicare payments to skilled nursing facilities.
"Coming on top of the various other cuts we have sustained over the past couple of years, the federal government's latest action will take still more resources away from day to day care of some of the most vulnerable Ohioans," Van Runkle said. Skilled nursing facilities were the targets of $360 million in Medicaid cuts at the state level in 2011, coupled with $400 million in federal Medicare reductions later the same year, among other cuts.
"The sad thing is that these Medicare cuts affect our efforts to rehabilitate people and get them back home after surgery or an acute illness or injury," Van Runkle added. Medicare covers up to 100 days of skilled nursing care following a hospital stay.
The Ohio Health Care Association is a non-profit association of more than 800 skilled nursing care facilities, assisted living communities, and providers serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, representing over 60,000 individuals. Many OHCA members also provide a variety of home and community-based services. OHCA is the largest long-term care association in the state, and the only chartered Ohio affiliate of the American Health Care Association, representing more than 12,000 long-term care communities nationwide.
SOURCE Ohio Health Care Association
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