Meanwhile, some advocates warn that reductions in Medicaid spending could impede progress in the fight against AIDS.
Stateline: Medicaid Health Providers Brace For New Round Of Fee Reductions
But the one Medicaid cost that states have usually been able to cut without worrying too much about the federal government is reimbursement to the providers themselves. And that is what most of them are doing this year. At least 33 states have reduced provider fees for the fiscal year that starts July 1, according to a report by the National Association of Budget Officers. "Provider pay cuts are the lesser of three evils," says Matt Salo, head of the National Association of Medicaid Directors (Vestal, 6/27).
CQ HealthBeat: Possible Medicaid Cuts Could Inhibit Battle Against AIDS
Federal spending on AIDS prevention and treatment has not specifically been targeted as part of deficit reduction efforts, but advocates warn that if Medicaid is cut as part of any agreement, progress in battling the epidemic would be undermined. About 40 percent of people with the HIV infection and AIDS are covered under Medicaid. Some of these patients are enrolled in both Medicaid and Medicare, and as a group they represent the poorest, sickest and most costly beneficiaries. Spending cutbacks for "dual eligibles" would especially threaten care, advocates say (Norman, 6/24).