budget cuts

DeSantis Goes Light On Medicaid Cuts

Feb 4, 2019
DeSantis standing at a podium in front of US Flag
Florida Governor's Office

As a congressman, Ron DeSantis carved out a name for himself railing against Medicaid spending. 

Jason Bellows was a Florida inmate on his way out of prison and back into the real world. 

Florida is a prime breeding ground for invasive species that can threaten the state’s ecology and economy. For every lionfish or Burmese python that’s captured, thousands remain. And the sheer scope of the problem is pushing some lawmakers to ask how much of a difference state funding actually makes.

Congress returns on Tuesday with a critical need for a characteristic rarely evident through a contentious spring and summer — cooperation between Republicans and President Barack Obama.

Daylina Miller/Health News Florida

In a small room covered with posters for diabetes prevention and free eye clinics, and a physician’s desk stacked with papers, Karen Cascone meets with her nurse practitioner.

Millions In Free Clinic Funds Vetoed

Jul 6, 2015

Gov. Rick Scott single-handedly vetoed funding for a 10-page list of local and statewide projects that legislators hoped to included in the state’s 2015 budget. The cuts totaled $461 million from the $78 billion state budget.

One area where Scott’s cuts hit particularly hard: health care for the poor. Among his bigger cuts was $9.5 million for the Florida Association of Free and Charitable Clinics, which supports free and low-cost clinics that provide health-care to low-income communities across the state.

Jeanette Rivera of Coral Springs was already struggling with breast cancer when her mother had a stroke, leaving her unable to care for Jeanette’s father, who has Parkinson’s disease. Rivera tried to get home-care services that would enable the older couple to remain in their condo, but found a long waiting list.

At the last minute, lawmakers in the Florida Legislature agreed to provide $65 million in extra funding to help hospitals as they transition to a new formula for Medicaid payments, the Miami Herald reports. But now safety-net hospitals say they’re worried Gov. Rick Scott could veto that part of the budget. 

Because the federal government anticipated more Americans would have health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, they planned to cut compensation for hospitals that treat a large number of uninsured patients, the Miami Herald reports. In Florida, many may still lack access to coverage because the state rejected Medicaid expansion.

Florida Today

Congress' approach to cutting the budget -- automatic cuts called "sequestration" -- has affected the elderly where it really counts: food. 

The Orlando Sentinel reports that both meal delivery and congregate meals for seniors have been reduced.

Tampa Tribune

University of South Florida and Moffitt Cancer Center say sequestration budget cuts are hurting their work, since most of their grants come from the National Institutes of Health, the Tampa Tribune reports. Moffitt, which expects to lose more than half its budget for cancer research, says it expects delays and layoffs.  

 

With practically all of Washington now expecting the automatic budget cuts -- "sequestration" in D.C.-talk -- to take effect, university medical schools are alarmed to see they will lose money two ways, The Gainesville Sun reports.

First, the National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation are cutting back on research grants by 5 percent; second, Medicare pay to faculty doctors and teaching hospitals will be trimmed 2 percent.

How to trim Medicare?

Nov 16, 2012

The White House will want to protect Medicaid and the health law from budget cuts, making Medicare a likely target. Kaiser Health News lays out options.