2018 Budget Has Serious Health Care Impact

$1.3 trillion budget bill will fund federal government for remainder of year

President Trump has signed the $1.3 trillion bill to fund the federal government for the rest of 2018, and the increases for health program spending are part of the highlights.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will receive an additional $10 billion over their previous level—a total of $78 billion, while the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) maintains their $4 billion towards administrative expenses.

Meanwhile, while the Office of the National Coordinator for HI Technology had been slated for a drastic cut, Congress decided to approve a $60 million budget. HHS’ Office of Civil Rights also received about 18 percent more than expected ($38.7 million, as opposed to a proposed $33 million.)

The opioid crisis will receive added attention and funding to combat the problem, with an almost 250 percent to $3.6 billion, while the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) receives a 30 percent increase in its budget to bring the total to $5 billion.

Notably, the bill does not provide funding for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and continues to block the government from seeking to protect insurance companies from higher costs.

SOURCE: Medscape

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