Letter to Editor: Harris Says Nay on Community-Based Healthcare and Spousal Impoverishment Protections

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1st District Representative, Andy Harris, voted against the bi-partisan, healthcare bill H.R. 3253 (5 Republicans and 4 Democrat co-sponsors). This bill — the Empowering Beneficiaries, Ensuring Access, and Strengthening Accountability Act of 2019 — would extend a number of provisions within the Medicaid program that serve to make the program more effective.

This bill would extend the Money Follows the Person Rebalancing Demonstration (MFP), which helps states rebalance their Medicaid long-term care systems by transitioning people with chronic conditions and disabilities into community-based care, through FY 2024. In addition, this bill would clarify that state Medicaid fraud and abuse control units are authorized to investigate abuse and neglect of Medicaid patients in board and care facilities, as well as patients receiving Medicaid-funded care in non-institutional settings.

Additionally, this bill would extend spousal impoverishment protections for seniors who receive long-term care in their homes or community settings through March 31, 2024.
Finally, this bill would; extend the Community Mental Health Services Demonstration Program thru 2021, fund the Medicaid Improvement Fund, and prohibit drug manufacturers from blending drug prices, a practice which lowers rebates to consumers.

The vote was 371 YEA, and 46 NAY. Harris voted NAY.

For more information on H.R. 3253 go here

Christopher Koch
Easton

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