AZ medical consultants say they’re not going to accept Medicaid expansion
The federal government has granted states $6.4 billion in emergency funding, with the intent of increasing access to primary care, but the effort is being seen as an expansion of Medicaid, not an expansion to the insurance program for low-income people.
The funding was the latest in a series of attempts by Congress to help states meet the demand for more health care services for the sick.
But the effort comes amid widespread concern that the federal government is underfunding the program by as much as $1 trillion.
The $6 billion has already been spent on primary care visits, testing and other treatment services, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
The federal budget office, the nonpartisan independent agency that tracks spending, says the emergency spending has been spent in 2016 on primary and preventive care for people with health care needs.
The spending is on top of about $8 billion already spent by states, hospitals and providers since the federal program began in 1996.
However, that money has not yet been spent directly on primary health care.
The Trump administration, which has been focused on health care reform since taking office, has signaled that the funding will help alleviate some of the pressure on states to improve access to care.
On Friday, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price said that if the $6-billion funding is used to expand coverage, it will provide the same services as if Medicaid were expanded.
“It will give states the ability to expand access to healthcare that was available before the expansion of coverage,” Price said.
“The funding will allow states to expand health insurance coverage for all people, regardless of income, status, geographic location or ability to pay.”
The money is being directed specifically to primary and preventative care for Medicaid enrollees and those who are eligible for public health benefits.
But it is also being used to reimburse hospitals and clinics that do not have sufficient primary care services, such as primary care for the homeless, and provide health insurance for the uninsured.
The administration has said it will take into account the needs of low- and moderate-income Americans when it decides whether to make payments to states.
“If you can’t provide basic primary care and preventive services, you don’t qualify for this funding,” Price told reporters.
The money has been set aside to pay for primary care at hospitals, clinics and outpatient services.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which administers Medicaid, said that it was aware of the emergency funds.
“We understand that the emergency funding is intended to assist states in meeting their obligations under the ACA,” said a CMS spokeswoman, Julie Kottlowski.
“States will be able to use the funds to expand their Medicaid programs and provide the services they need to meet the health needs of Medicaid enrollee populations.”
The budget office says that states that receive emergency funding must comply with other requirements to meet those requirements.
The agency has recommended that states continue to use a federal benchmark of the state’s poverty rate for primary and prevention care, which it says is based on the amount of income that would be required to afford the same care for an average family of four.
That benchmark is based in part on the cost of living in a state, which is higher for the poor and middle class.
In addition, the budget office estimates that the supplemental Medicaid funds would help states offset the increased costs of providing care for high-risk populations, including people with disabilities.