Both the Florida House and Senate budget versions propose cuts to the state’s already-low Medicaid payments to health care providers. Safety net hospitals, such as Tallahassee Memorial, claim that’s bad news, not only for Medicaid patients, but also for all state taxpayers.
Florida already ranks 47th among all states in funding for the joint state-federal Medicaid program. Deep cuts in Medicaid funding in the Senate – and even steeper reductions in the House budget – would put Florida at the bottom of all states in terms of funding for the program. Tallahassee Memorial Healthcare CEO Mark O’Bryant says that’s unfair to the state’s taxpayers as well as Medicaid patients.
“Floridians are paying money into the federal government that are going to New York and Texas and California,” all of which, O’Bryant said, draw down more federal Medicaid support than does Florida.
The current proposed Senate budget cuts Florida Medicaid support by nearly $260 million in the coming fiscal year. The House budget version slashes that funding by more than $620 million.