Fin/Budget- Nebraska hospitals ask for record Medicaid reimbursement bump

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[MM Curator Summary]: Hospitals trying to deal with a reported 20% cost increase are driving the 10% Medicaid rate increase to them (on the heels of a 2% increase they got in 2021 and 2022). My costs have gone up a lot too, lately – how do I get this deal?

Clipped from:

The Nebraska Hospital Association is asking state lawmakers for a 9.6 percent Medicaid reimbursement rate in 2023 and a 7.7 percent rate in 2024, CBS affiliate KMTV reported Jan. 2. 

The request comes after Nebraska hospitals saw a 2 percent bump each of the last two years, according to the report.

Nebraska Hospital Association President Jeremy Nordquist said inflation has had a significant effect on hospitals in the state, according to the report. Overall costs are up more than 20 percent per patient compared to pre-pandemic levels, with most of that increase coming from labor costs. 

Mr. Nordquist said 54 percent of the state’s hospitals are operating in the red, according to the report. 

He said hospitals lose money on Medicaid and Medicare patients.

“For years a lot of that cost was shifted over to people who have private insurance,” Mr. Nordquist said, according to the report. “And everyone else has to pay more because the government’s not carrying its weight with Medicare and Medicaid. … In the past [commercial insurance] has been willing to … help with the shortfall. That negotiation is getting tougher for hospitals.”

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