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Senate Budget Hurts Physicians and Patients

The North Carolina Senate released their version of the 2014-2015 state budget late Wednesday night. The Senate’s budget has many provisions of concern to us, and we believe there are more effective ways to control costs than those adopted by the Senate.

The Senate budget proposal is moving rapidly through the legislative process. We are encouraging the members of the House of Representatives to carefully consider their budget proposal and not adopt many of the provisions the Senate has proposed.

It is important to contact your House member today and let them know that the Senate budget needs to be modified to correct the following issues:

  • Additional Rates Cut to Physicians

This budget not only maintains the 3 percent rate cut from last year’s budget, but it also removes the requirement that the Department of Health and Human Services develop a withhold or shared savings plan to support it. In fact, instead of correcting the Department’s misstep, the Senate endorses the rate cut and piles on an additional 2 percent cut.

  • Study a Tax on Physicians

In the attempt to explore new revenue options, the NC Senate is also requiring that the Department of Health and Human Services study the feasibility of taxing all North Carolina physicians for the medical services they provide. This study is not limited to physicians enrolled as Medicaid providers.

  • Prohibit any work to be done regarding ACOs and Medicaid Reform

In very clear and simple terms the Senate states that “The Department of Health and Human Services shall cease any activities related to implementing Medicaid reform based on its proposed accountable care organization (ACO) model.” This budget rejects the positive, quality-centered solutions proposed for Medicaid reform, wasting over a year’s worth of work and state resources dedicated to this goal.

Contact your Representatives today and ask them to support policies that will move NC forward by providing high quality care to our state’s most needy patients — without punishing the physicians who treat them.