The federal government might soon cut back the amount of money it gives Missouri’s Medicaid program. President Bush proposes to cut a provision of the Medicaid program to ease pressure on the federal budget. The proposal would cut the state’s ability to generate federally-matched funds. Dwight Fine with the Missouri Hospital Association says this cut would be drastic. The cut would come from a change in the safe harbor provision, which allows the state to tax health care providers, and then direct the money to funds the federal government would then match. Currently, 6% of the state’s funds can come from such taxes, but the proposed cut would drop that to 3%. Representatives with the hospital association have traveled to Washington to lobby against the change. Fine says the trip seemed successful. He hopes those talks will bring the point home.
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