State lawmakers heard testimony Wednesday on several proposals to cut Medicaid spending. Governor Gina Raimondo’s proposed budget would cut state payments to nursing homes by three percent.
That’s on top of rates that have stayed stagnant for a while. Woonsocket nursing home administrator Shaun Cournoyer testified before the senate finance committee those cuts would lead to layoffs.
“And the last thing I think we want in this state is to have to eliminate jobs. When you eliminate jobs in the nursing home industry, you’re eliminating hands-on care for your residents,” said Cournoyer.
Task force co-chair Doctor Ira Wilson testified the group is looking for ways to prevent more cuts in the future.
“We are certainly not interested in having the state come back year after year asking for short-term cuts,” said Wilson. “So the savings and the approaches that we want to suggest are designed to be a glide-path toward more fundamental system change.”
Wilson says those changes could include changing the way the state pays health care providers.
Hospitals would also see about a five percent rate cut if the current budget proposals pass. A hospital group suggested pooling the savings to reward hospitals for better performance.
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