Note to Georgia Republicans: Not everyone on the right is convinced that saying “But, the hospitals asked us to tax, er, fee them!” justifies the Medicaid bed tax, er, assessment fee passed two years ago and possibly up for renewal in next year’s legislative session.
In fact, the editorial page of the Wall Street Journal suggests this bed tax, er, assessment fee is ripe for elimination if President Obama and Congress are serious about even modest reforms to entitlement programs. From an editorial today:
A deal also ought to end the long-running “bed tax” scam in which states charge hospitals a fee to increase health-care spending and thus their federal matching rate. Then they launder some of the money back to the hospitals to offset the fee. This is real waste, fraud and abuse, not the talking-point version.
Who in the General Assembly will carry the bill to renew the tax, er, fee and explain why it’s not a “scam” that’s “real waste, fraud and abuse, not the talking-point version”?
– By Kyle Wingfield