Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association statement on state budget bills

healthcareJulian Walker of the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association issued the following statement on the ongoing work on state budget bills.

“Today’s budget bill presentations by the House of Delegates and Virginia Senate represent a step forward in the ongoing effort to improve our health care delivery system, and to support its vital role in providing essential medical treatment to millions of Virginians. One particularly welcome development is the House budget’s inclusion of a plan to recover billions in Virginia taxpayer dollars and bring them back to the Commonwealth to help hundreds of thousands of low-income, hard-working, uninsured Virginians get health care coverage.”

“Drawing down federal resources to improve health care access will enhance public health and Virginia’s economy. And while we applaud efforts by the House of Delegates, it is disappointing that proposed budget amendments would require hospitals to pay for the state’s share of coverage expansion, and would do so without providing a corresponding update to Medicaid rates for hospitals as required by state code.”

“In the remainder of the 2018 legislative session, there is much work to do to find the most cost-effective, efficient, and fiscally responsible way to achieve the goal of increased coverage access. As state budget discussions occur in the days and weeks ahead, members of Virginia’s hospital community will continue to be engaged partners in the work to develop compromise policy solutions that benefit Virginia and its citizens.”