Hospitals to Senate: 'Go back to the drawing board' on health plan

Hospitals to Senate: 'Go back to the drawing board' on health plan
© Greg Nash
The American Hospital Association urged the Senate on Thursday to "go back to the drawing board" on its healthcare legislation, warning that the current version of the bill could hurt the most vulnerable.
"From the onset of this debate, America’s hospitals and health systems have been guided by a set of key principles that would protect coverage for Americans," AHA President Rick Pollack said in a statement.
"Unfortunately, the draft bill under discussion in the Senate moves in the opposite direction, particularly for our most vulnerable patients," he said.
The GOP healthcare draft released Thursday ends ObamaCare's Medicaid expansion in 2024. Separately, the bill's proposed reforms to Medicaid's funding formula could result in billions of dollars in cuts over 10 years.
"The Senate proposal would likely trigger deep cuts to the Medicaid program that covers millions of Americans with chronic conditions such as cancer, along with the elderly and individuals with disabilities who need long-term services and support," the AHA said.
"Medicaid cuts of this magnitude are unsustainable and will increase costs to individuals with private insurance."
Health groups, whose support was key to passing ObamaCare in 2010, largely opposed the House GOP health bill passed earlier this year and have been mostly shut out of the process.