HCA Memo on State Budget Outcome

HCA last week circulated a preliminary analysis of the just-completed state budget. (See our memo here.)

This year’s budget cycle was unprecedented from the beginning, even well before a global health pandemic shook the core of our nation’s health system as well as the state’s fiscal outlook.

Early in the year, the Governor sought to address state Medicaid spending by reconvening the Medicaid Redesign Team (MRT) to close a $2.5 billion budget gap. The MRT recommendations were released in late March, swiftly acted upon, and largely embraced in the final budget.

Among the MRT measures are substantial changes to home and community-based care. Many of these measures were strenuously opposed by HCA.

State budget officials, however, have stressed the need for cuts across a variety of programs, including a continued course on MRT adoption, given that the COVID-19 crisis could cause a budget hole of $15 billion on top of existing fiscal imbalances, creating enormous pressure for the kinds of reductions and program overhauls that were ultimately advanced for much of the state Medicaid program.

During the implementation phases, HCA will work to shape or refine, where possible, all measures that impact home and community-based care.