Budget Realities Are Rippling Through States' Health Institutions

The (Raleigh, N.C.) News-Observer: "The state's drug assistance program for HIV patients has been capped at its current enrollment, with budget cuts hitting at the same time more people need help, state officials said Monday." Because patients with HIV are more likely to spread the virus when not on medications, public health officials are worried about denying medications (Avery, 1/26).

Kansas Health Institute News Service: "Last year, nine of the state's 27 community mental health centers spent more money than they took in. A new survey shows that even more of the centers are now facing potential money troubles" (Ranney, 1/25).

Associated Press/The Seattle Times: "The uncertain future of the federal health-care overhaul has wrinkled Washington state's hopes of landing a $1 billion bailout to fix its budget deficit this year, Gov. Chris Gregoire said Monday. That change could bring stronger momentum for tax increases and budget cuts at the Legislature, now a quarter of the way through its scheduled eight-week session" (Woodward, 1/25).

Addison County (Vt.) Independent: "Gov. James Douglas's proposed state budget cuts have hospital administrators at Porter Medical Center keeping a close eye on what potentially severe cutbacks in health and human services funding could mean for Vermont hospitals" (Flagg, 1/25).

Capital News Service/The South Bend (Ind.) Tribune: "Michigan is facing a loss of physicians as cuts in Medicaid and Medicare reimbursement continue. Several thousand physicians have left the state after their residency programs or during their practices," according to a Michigan State Medical Society official. An 8 percent cut in reimbursements for Medicaid and Medicare was approved in September (Guo, 1/25).

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