Maine hospitals would wait for $65 million in payments under a proposal by Gov. John Baldacci to close a $73 million state budget gap stemming from a recalculation of federal Medicaid matching funds. Hospitals are supposed to receive $95 million in the next two fiscal years to make up for current state payment shortfalls and increase hospital reimbursement rates. Under Baldacci's plan, hospitals would receive $30 million over the two-year period; $36 million would be go toward paying a $108 million settlement with 12 hospitals owed state money as far back as 1993; and $29 million would be used to help close the budget gap. In a news release, Baldacci also called for simplifying the state's "complex and burdensome" hospital payment system, saying, "It fails to adequately incentivize quality, and it needs to be fixed." -- by Tony Fong
Maine plan would cut into payments to hospitals
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