Bracing For Deficit Panel Battle Between Defense, Health Interests
Meanwhile, home health advocates are launching campaigns to ward off more Medicare payment cuts when Congress returns to Capitol Hill.
Reuters: U.S. Debt Super Committee Vexes Even Lobbyists
Thousands of Washington lobbyists are scrambling to influence the work of a congressional "super committee" given the job of identifying up to $1.5 trillion in deficit reductions, with many worried about how to gain access to its 12 members. The committee is due to report its findings by Thanksgiving and with such massive potential cuts to the U.S. federal budget being decided by just a handful of lawmakers in such a short timeframe, lobbyists say the mission to protect their clients' interests is unprecedented and potentially impossible. ... One lobbyist, speaking on the condition of anonymity, predicted "Holy War" between the health and defense industries, and their legions of lobbyists as they try to protect their budgets ahead of the potential automatic cuts (Reid, 8/29).
The Hill: Nursing Homes Launch TV, Lobbying Campaign To Ward Off Medicare Cuts
The nursing-home industry is launching a multimillion-dollar ad buy and advocacy campaign this week in an effort to prevent more Medicare and Medicaid cuts once Congress comes back to Washington. The industry says previous Medicare and Medicaid cuts have already hampered nursing homes' ability to stay fully staffed and provide top-quality care. Further reductions — including cuts from the deficit-cutting super committee — would be devastating, industry groups argue (Baker, 8/29).
Politico Pro: Home Care Groups Launch Ads Against Cuts
Reeling from a big hit to skilled nursing last month and facing the prospect of more cuts from the super committee, advocates of the nursing home industry will announce a national ad campaign Tuesday to protect their funding. The American Health Care Association and the Alliance for Quality Nursing Home Care will make an ad buy in eight states, initially targeting members of the super committee and states where Medicaid funding is at issue. The move follows a significant blow to the industry in July, when CMS announced a final rule that will trim payments to skilled nursing by 11.1 percent in the next fiscal year to make up for what CMS calculated to be previous overpayments (Norman, 8/29).
And the AMA is expressing concern about the health law's PCORI and its research plans —
The Hill: Doctors Lobby Warns Against Weighing Cost In Government-Supported Research
A new medical research body created by the health care reform law should not consider the cost of treatments when evaluating them, the nation's largest physician lobby argues. The American Medical Association has invited other groups to sign on to a comment letter regarding the type of research that should be conducted under the law's Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). The independent nonprofit began seeking public input last month, and the AMA is concerned about its proposal to "investigate … optimizing outcomes while addressing burden to individuals, resources, and other stakeholder perspectives" (Pecquet, 8/29).