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Medicaid Parity Sign-On Letter to HCR Conferees

Creation/Revision Date: January 12, 2010

January 12, 2010

The Honorable Harry Reid
Majority Leader
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi 
Speaker
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515
The Honorable Charles Rangel
Chairman
House Ways & Means Committee
Washington, DC 2051

The Honorable Henry Waxman 
Chairman
House Energy & Commerce Committee 
Washington, DC 20515

The Honorable George Miller 
Chairman
House Education & Labor Committee
Washington, DC 20515
The Honorable Max Baucus
Chairman
Senate Finance Committee
Washington, DC 20510
The Honorable Tom Harkin 
Chairman 
Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee 
Washington, DC 20510
The Honorable Chris Dodd 
Chairman 
Subcommittee on Children & Families 
Senate Health, Education, Labor & 
Pensions Committee 
Washington, DC 20510

 
Dear Majority Leader Reid, Speaker Pelosi and Chairmen Rangel, Waxman, Miller, Baucus, Dodd and Harkin:

As you craft the final health care reform bill, the undersigned organizations urge you to ensure meaningful access to care under the proposed Medicaid expansion by adopting the House provision to bring Medicaid reimbursement rates for primary care in line with comparable Medicare rates within four years. 

While we strongly support expanding Medicaid to extend health coverage to low income individuals, we are very concerned that failure to address reimbursement disparities will weaken an already fragile network of Medicaid providers at a time when the demand for their services will be growing. 
Medicaid rates average just 66% of Medicare rates for primary care services and are woefully inadequate to cover the cost of providing care. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the planned expansion will increase enrollment in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program by as many as 15 million beneficiaries. Those who rely on Medicaid to meet their health care needs include millions of low-income women, children, minorities and individuals with disabilities. The inadequacy of Medicaid reimbursement levels must be addressed in conjunction with the Medicaid expansion or we risk leaving our poorest and most medically-vulnerable residents behind despite the remarkable promise offered by health reform. 

Please give high priority to ensuring access to care for Medicaid beneficiaries by adopting the House provision to adjust Medicaid payments for primary care to at least 100 percent of Medicare rates.

Thank you for your consideration.

Respectfully signed by the following organizations:
1. AFL-CIO 
2. AFSCME 
3. AIDS Foundation of Chicago 
4. AIDS Project Los Angeles 
5. AIDS Resource Center of Wisconsin 
6. AIDS/HIV Health Alternatives 
7. American Academy of Family Physicians 
8. American Academy of Pediatrics 
9. American Academy of Physician Assistants 
10. American Foundation for the Blind 
11. American Anesthesiology Group, Inc. 
12. American Association of People with Disabilities 
13. American Association on Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities 
14. American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians 
15. American College of Osteopathic Internists 
16. American College of Physicians 
17. American Hospice Foundation 
18. American Network of Community Options and Resources 
19. American Nurses Association 
20. American Occupational Therapy Association 
21. American Osteopathic Association 
22. American Society of Nephrology 
23. American Thoracic Society 
24. APSE 
25. Association for Community Affiliated Plans 
26. Association of University Centers on Disabilities 
27. Autism Society 
28. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law 
29. Black Women's Health Imperative 
30. Broward House 
31. Burton Blatt Institute
32. California Medical Association 
33. Catholic Health Association of the US 
34. Center for Independence of the Disabled, NY 
35. Center for Medicare Advocacy, Inc. 
36. Cerebral Palsy Association of Ohio 
37. Clinica Sierra Vista 
38. Coalition of Wisconsin Aging Groups 
39. Coalition on Human Needs 
40. Committee of Interns and Residents/SEIU Healthcare 
41. Community Access National Network 
42. Consumer Action 
43. Consumers Union 
44. Council for Exceptional Children 
45. Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund 
46. Doctors Council SEIU 
47. Doctors for America 
48. Easter Seals 
49. Families USA 
50. Family Voices 
51. Harlem United Community AIDS Center 
52. Harris Center for Disability and Health Policy 
53. Health Care For All (Massachusetts) 
54. Health Reform Program 
55. HIV Dental Alliance 
56. HIV Health Services Planning Council-San Francisco 
57. HIV Medicine Association 
58. HIVictorious, Inc. 
59. Housing Works 
60. La Fe Policy Research and Education Center 
61. Lutheran Services in America Disability Network 
62. Mental Health America 
63. MomsRising 
64. National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors 
65. National Alliance on Mental Illness 
66. National Association of Children's Hospitals 
67. National Association of Community Health Centers 
68. National Association of County Human Services Administrators 
69. National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners 
70. National Association of People with AIDS 
71. National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare 
72. National Council of Jewish Women 
73. National Disability Rights Network 
74. National Down Syndrome Congress 
75. National Health Law Program 
76. National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health 
77. National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty 
78. National Partnership for Women & Families 
79. National Patient Advocate Foundation 
80. National Physicians Alliance 
81. National Respite Coalition 
82. National Spinal Cord Injury Association 
83. National Women's Health Network 
84. National Women's Law Center 
85. New York Lawyers for the Public Interest 
86. Northwest Health Law Advocates 
87. NYC for Change 
88. Out of Many, One 
89. Pediatrix Medical Group 
90. Planned Parenthood Federation of America 
91. Project Inform 
92. Racial and Ethnic Disparities Coalition 
93. Raising Women's Voices for the Health Care We Need 
94. Renal Physicians Association 
95. Reproductive Health Access Project 
96. RESULTS 
97. Ryan White Medical Providers Coalition 
98. San Francisco AIDS Foundation 
99. Service Employees International Union (SEIU) 
100. Society of General Internal Medicine 
101. Southern Poverty Law Center 
102. Strong Consulting 
103. Tennessee Health Care Campaign 
104. Tennessee Justice Center 
105. The AIDS Institute 
106. The Arc of the United States 
107. The National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems 
108. Treatment Access Expansion Project 
109. U.S. PIRG 
110. UHCAN Ohio 
111. United Cerebral Palsy 
112. United Spinal Association 
113. Village Care 
114. Virginia Poverty Law Center 
115. Voices for America's Children 
116. Well Spouse Association 
117. Women Together for Change 
118. World Institute on Disability 

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1700 Rockville Pike
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Phone: 301-468-3515
Fax: 301-468-3511
Email: rpa@renalmd.org

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