The Supreme Court ruled that states could opt out of the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion. Each state gets to decide if they do or do not want to participate. For hospitals, the expansion is a no-brainer; they lose millions of dollars on patients who do not have the assets or the insurance to pay for those services.
An annual report was just released by the Michigan Health and Hospital Association, which found that Michigan hospitals lost more than $1.8 billion in bills that were not paid during 2011. For 2010, they lost just 2 percent less than that.
The huge bulk of that was Medicaid payments that were “shortfalls,” payments which did not cover the entire cost of care, to the tune of $804 million. The hospitals also lost about $882 million on uncollectable cases and the uninsured.
Currently, 1.2 million Michiganders do not have health insurance. A Medicaid expansion for the state would cover approximately 450,000 people, which hospital advocates say would significantly impact the amount of uncompensated care in the state.
While Gov. Rick Snyder has publically supported expansion and has stated that his fiscal 2014 budget includes a proposal to expand under the Affordable Care Act, some critics have voiced concern about long-term costs.
Right now, nothing has been decided, but state legislators are combing over the budget. What this means for Michigan waits to be seen.
If you have questions or concerns about Medicaid or Medicare, or would like to know how long-term care planning can secure your future, please feel free to contact me.
Learn more at http://www.michiganelderlawattorney.com/