Looming deficit-reduction negotiations coming soon after Tuesday's federal elections could result in larger-than-expected cuts to hospitals, some health leaders warned.
Dr. Bill Frist, former Republican Senate Majority Leader, told attendees at a Washington health policy symposium that he expects a so-called grand bargain on deficit reduction within a few months with 2.5-to-1 ratio of spending cuts-to-tax increases. And hospital payments are the likely source of much of the coming federal spending cuts, due to the large share of Medicare and Medicaid spending they receive.
“I don't think hospitals understand how deep these cuts are going to be in the grand bargain,” Frist said at the World Healthcare Innovation and Technology Congress.
The possibility for more hospital spending cuts on top of those coming under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was not a surprise to some.