Hospitals' 8 asks of Congress right now

Amid the challenges facing healthcare organizations, the American Hospital Association is planning an all-out effort to secure additional support from Congress on issues ranging from payments to prior authorization requirements.

AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack outlined hospitals' asks of Congress in message posted on the AHA website Dec. 2.

As lawmakers come together for the post-November election lame-duck session, one ask of hospitals is to stop the 4 percent statutory Pay-As-You-Go sequester from taking effect in January. The AHA estimates that failure to waive the sequester cuts would lead to $38 billion in Medicare cuts in fiscal year 2023.

According to Mr. Pollack, hospitals are also asking Congress to:

  • Establish a hospital-targeted temporary per diem payment to address challenges related to patient discharges to post-acute care or behavioral facilities.
  • Boost the amount of Medicare-funded graduate medical education positions 
  • Extend or make permanent the rural Low-volume Adjustment and the Medicare- dependent Hospital programs
  • Make permanent telehealth expansion and extend the hospital-at-home program.
  • Finalize Senate passage of the Improving Seniors' Timely Access to Care Act, which addresses prior authorization requirements under Medicare Advantage plans.
  • For certain facilities that serve marginalized urban communities, create a special statutory designation.
  • Expand behavioral healthcare access and strengthen the behavioral healthcare workforce.

To read Mr. Pollack's full message, click here.

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