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NH Senate president: Short-term fix needed after Medicaid Enhancement Tax ruling
Speaking Tuesday at a Senate Ways and Means Committee meeting, the Salem Republican said lawmakers need a long-term solution that phases out the Medicaid Enhancement Tax assessed on hospitals' patient services.
The MET raises $185 annually, with $72 million going into the state's general fund. The remaining money is used to pay Medicaid providers and to reimburse hospitals for charity care and Medicaid rates, which pay about 50 cents on the dollar.
"Hospitals remain committed to working collaboratively to ensure a sustainable Medicaid program for our patients and their caregivers," New Hampshire Hospital Association President Steve Ahnen said. "It is essential that all parties, including policymakers and hospitals, continue to work together to resolve the many fundamental issues and challenges posed by the MET and these recent court decisions in a timely manner."
"There is a considerable amount of concern and discussion bordering on hysteria, which I think is unwarranted and unfounded because a simple solution is very obtainable, Hess said.
The court ruled April 10 the tax violated the federal and state constitution's equal protection provision because it did not apply to other entities providing identical or nearly identical services. A February court decision had a similar conclusion for rehabilitation hospitals.
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