JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The Mississippi Division of Medicaid is proposing to do away with the Medicare Crossover Payments, and the state Hospital Association is saying that could put hospitals and patients in jeopardy.
Some patients are eligible for Medicare and Medicaid - typically low-income elderly and disabled individuals. Medicare pays part of their bill and Medicaid fills in the gap. But the Mississippi Division of Medicaid wants to end those crossover payments.
“And it will actually be decreasing reimbursements to providers by $32 million,” explained The Mississippi Hospital Association President/CEO Timothy Moore.
Mississippi Hospital Association is asking Medicaid to withdraw its proposal. First reason, they say it violates state law.
“It already clearly states in HB 71 that Medicaid will not be able to move to a reduction in crossovers without legislative approval," noted Moore. "I’ve not seen a bill passed by the legislature that allowed them the authority to do that.”
But then, there’s the impact on the patients.
“You could see actual services being limited," added Moore. "You could see certain services that were being offered eliminated. You’ve got a number of issues when reimbursements go down that significantly certainly the hospital will have to make some type of adjustment to keep the doors open.”
And the impact on already cash-strapped hospitals?
“A number of these patients will be living in rural areas," Moore noted. "So, you’re looking at a pretty significant impact on your small rural hospitals which ironically we’re trying to find ways to help. But it seem like for some other reason now, we’re trying to take reimbursements away from them. I don’t really understand that.”
We requested a statement on the proposed amendment to the State Plan from the Mississippi Division of Medicaid but we were told they don’t currently have a statement or comment at this time.