3 keys to understand Trump's new budget proposal

U.S. Rep. Richard Neal D-Mass. the incoming chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee speaks with reporters after addressing an audience during a gathering of business leaders at a meeting of the New England Council Tuesday Nov. 27 2018 in Bos

Outcry over Trump's cuts to Medicare hospital payments

HHS secretary Alex Azar will appear in front of three separate Congressional committees this week to defend the budget: Tuesday, the House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Health; Wednesday, the House Appropriations subcommittee; and Thursday the Senate Finance Committee.

"He's not cutting Medicare in this budget", asserted acting White House budget director Russell Vought. The analysis from the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB) finds that the vast majority of the Medicare cuts in Trump's budget, released on Monday, are to payments to hospitals and doctors, not cuts to benefits for seniors on the program.

"Once again, President Trump fails to understand how disastrous his budget proposal would be for hardworking Americans, scientific research and education, and the future of our country", Foster said in a statement. "Nearly a trillion dollar cut in Medicare".

However, the budget is unlikely to affect public spending levels, which are controlled by Congress.

"Over the next 10 years, we are confident that the economic policies of this administration ... will more than pay for the costs of the tax cuts", said Vought.

"If we can reduce the regulatory state and get health care costs down, we can get the economic engine going, and then restrain spending".

Questioned at the budget hearing by Rep. G.K. Butterfield, D-N.C., Azar acknowledged that the administration can not force Medicaid spending limits onto states, and Congress would have to approve such sweeping changes.

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In addition, multiple New York Times articles have credited Trump with graduating first in his class from Wharton. Ward mentioned in what she called her "fact checking" stage was entirely false", Mirijanian said.

Obama also curtailed payments to private insurers in Medicare Advantage, which Trump does not do. It's common for administrations of both political parties to call for cuts in Medicare payments to hospitals.

It cuts $845 billion, nearly a trillion dollar cut in Medicare, and nearly a quarter trillion, $240 billion cut in Medicaid. Why? Because the program is so big, even a single-digit reduction in percent terms can add up to hundreds of billions of dollars over time.

"Providers are likely to say that the proposed cuts are likely to harm patient care, especially if they think there is some possibility that Congress will adopt them", said Neuman. That includes shifting roughly $269 billion in funding for training medical residents and payments to hospitals for caring for the uninsured to the Department of Health and Human Services' budget.

The group also said it's concerned about that some of Trump's Medicare drug proposals could create winners and losers among beneficiaries. "But they do seem to recognize how central the idea of a border wall has been to Trump's supporters since the start of his campaign", he added.

A statement from AARP reflected a mix of praise and concern.

"Did President Trump acknowledge he was breaking a key campaign promise when he agreed to a budget that cuts Medicare?" demanded Democratic Representative Jan Schakowsky.

The Medicare Rights Center said "it is hard to envision a situation where these changes do not profoundly impact the lives of people who depend on the program".

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