||September 19, 2011
||Dave Lemmon, Director of Communications
Robert Meissner, Deputy Director of Communications
Bryan Fisher, Press Secretary
Families USA Supports President’s Equitable Approach to Budget but Opposes Medicaid Cost Shifts to States
President Obama today released his proposal for reducing the federal budget deficit while fully financing his jobs package. The following is the statement of Ron Pollack, Executive Director of the health consumer organization Families USA, about the President’s proposal:
“We applaud the President’s emphasis on reducing federal budget deficits in a fair and equitable manner. It makes little sense that the burden of budget changes should be shouldered disproportionately by middle-class and lower-income Americans—with the most affluent failing to contribute their fair share.
“Families USA, however, believes that the cuts to the Medicaid program in the President’s proposal, which shift the burden to states and ultimately onto the shoulders of seniors, people with disabilities, and low-income families who depend on the program as their lifeline, would be harmful. We will oppose those proposed cutbacks. The proposed Medicaid cuts, such as the reduced federal matching dollars to the states, make little sense for the following reasons:
- “Most of the cuts are not real cost efficiencies; instead, they are merely cost shifts to the states. Since the overwhelming majority of states can't or won't bear that extra burden, it will ultimately be a cost shift to low-income families, who will experience tragic cutbacks in coverage
- “While the President’s proposal rewards states for early Medicaid enrollment gains as the historic Affordable Care Act is implemented in 2014, in subsequent years,the reductions in federal matching dollars will shift costs to the states, thereby undermining states’ commitments to improved health coverage.
“We therefore urge that the proposed cutback in state Medicaid funding be dropped.”
Families USA is the national organization for health care consumers. It is nonprofit and nonpartisan and advocates for high-quality, affordable health care for all Americans.
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