In Wake of Katrina, Tell Congress To Oppose Medicaid Cuts!

  1. ana nurses strategic action team message:


    urgent action needed!
    tell congress to oppose medicaid cuts!



    in the wake of hurricane katrina, congress has hastened to utilize medicaid to provide health care to those displaced by the storm. while the american nurses association supports this development, we are extremely concerned that some congressional leaders are continuing with plans to cut $10 billion in medicaid funding over the next 5 years.

    on thursday, president barbara blakeney asserted that "now is the time to fully address the health care crisis in this country rather than continuing our ineffective band-aid approach."she was joined at a press conference by fellow nurses who serve in congress--rep. lois capps (d-ca), rep. eddie bernice johnson (d-tx) and rep. carolyn mccarthy (d-ny)--and congressional leaders who all called for an end to the proposed medicaid cuts.

    congress should have compassion not only for the victims of hurricane katrina but also for the nation's poor, elderly and disabled, along with the 45.8 million americans who lack health insurance. ana finds it unconscionable that congress would consider proceeding with medicaid cuts at a time when the human needs of our fellow americans is so great. continuing with plans to cut $10 billion in medicaid funding over the next 5 years would add insult to injury.

    even prior to katrina's landfall the proposal to cut federal funding for medicaid only further decreased access to care. in august, the u.s. census bureau reported that:
    • more than 150,000 people lost employment-based health insurance in 2004 (60.4% of americans had this coverage in 2003; 59.8% had it in 2004). since 2000, more than 3.6 million americans have lost this coverage.
    • the number of americans relying upon medicaid increased by 1.8 million in 2004 (the percentage of americans covered by medicaid increased from 12.4% in 2003 to 12.9% in 2004). since 2000, nearly 8 million have been added to the medicaid rolls.
    • in 2004, the number of americans living in poverty increased by 1.1 million. since 2000, the number of americans living below the poverty level has increased by more than 5.4 million.
    now, more than ever, we must fight to ensure the health care safety net is strengthened - not weakened!


    we need your help today!


    what you can do:
    1. get details on the proposed medicaid cuts at www.anapoliticalpower.org
    2. ask your members of congress to oppose any cuts in medicaid.
    access and e-mail a sample message to your members of congress by clicking on the "write a message" button at the bottom of the oppose medicaid cuts page on www.anapoliticalpower.org. don't forget, personalized messages carry the most weight!
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   NRSKarenRN
    In PA, legislature has limited General Assistance category recepients to TWO hoiitalizations for med surg problems, ONE rehab stay and ONE psych admission, and 18 doctors visits per year.

    Federal law prohibits ER 's from turning anyone away without stabilization---just cost shifted burdon of care onto hospitals.

    :angryfire :angryfire :angryfire
  4. by   pickledpepperRN
    Thank you Karen.
    Making calls tomorrow.
    Wrote letters to go into the mail tomorrow,
  5. by   ZASHAGALKA
    I think there is scant need to make those calls. A few crackheads on capital hill do not make for a pressing concern.

    (Yes, I know I just called a couple of REPUBLICANS crackheads.)

    I doubt that Katrina will result in cuts. If anything Texas, as least, is having some funding RESTORED because of Katrina and Rita.

    But I will say this: medicare will have to be addressed much sooner than social security or it won't be available, for anybody. My solution: means test it. If you're a millionaire, congrats on living the American dream. This benefit will always be available should your circumstances change. In the meantime, buy your own insurance. You can afford it.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
    Last edit by ZASHAGALKA on Sep 25, '05
  6. by   NRSKarenRN
    found at healthleaders.com:

    white paper:reshaping health policy: the impact the federal budget process may have on medicaid and medicare
    ernst & young, september 20, 2005

    medicaid is now receiving more intense political attention than it has at any time in the last decade, and this paper on "reshaping health policy: the impact the federal budget process may have on medicaid and medicare," provides an almost up-to-the-minute report on both the substance and process of that debate.

    view report
  7. by   NRSKarenRN
  8. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Oh believe me, medicare HAS to be addressed by congress in the coming decade. There will be a time for phone calls.

    I was just commenting that Katrina/Rita aren't the rationale. I think maybe I was confusing your comments with the comments of a few congressman that were saying, 'cut the drug benefit to pay for Katrina' - that isn't going to happen.

    But at some point, soon, cuts WILL be made, either in services or who is eligible to receive benefits. In its present form, it's just unsustainable.

    The wonderful thing about medicine is how far and fast we are advancing. The downside is such advances cost more than just the usual 'inflationary' increases. Healthcare costs are increasing much faster than inflation. We will have a national debate on how to contain costs. There's really no choice.

    My vote is to cut out the millionaires and let them pay for what they can very well afford rather than cut services. And fancy that, I'm a Republican saying that. I hope to BE a millionare someday. And if I am, I don't think paying for my own insurance is too much to ask.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.

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