As Congress prepares for a busy last month of the year, the American Hospital Association is lobbying lawmakers to support legislation that will extend some health programs that are set to expire.
Lawmakers urged to extend health programs
In a letter Tuesday to the chairmen and ranking members of the Senate Finance Committee and House Ways and Means Committee, AHA Executive Vice President Richard Pollack emphasized that it is hard for the nation's hospitals to plan for both patient and community needs when the future of a healthcare program is uncertain. He then listed several of programs that AHA would like to see extended this year, including Medicare cost payments for clinical diagnostic lab tests in certain rural areas, the outpatient hold-harmless provision for rural hospitals and sole community hospitals, and ambulance add-on services.
“In addition, several critical programs, such as the Medicare-dependent hospital program and the enhanced low-volume adjustment for prospective payment system hospitals, are scheduled to expire next calendar year,” Pollack wrote in his letter. “Your support for extending these programs and provisions is vital.”
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