Most of the many-faceted segments of the healthcare industry appeared pleased with Thursday's majority Supreme Court decision to uphold most provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, even as they vowed to work toward the repeal of pieces they still find objectionable.
"Today's ruling does give clarity to hospitals as they move forward to transform the way they provide care and work with patients and communities as well," American Hospital Association president and CEO Rich Umbdenstock said in a media teleconference. But the ruling "opens up new questions as well," one of which is the impact on hospitals in those states that opt not to implement the expansion of Medicaid to patients earning up to 133% of the federal poverty level.
The court determined that states could choose not to enroll those patients without suffering reduced federal subsidies under the Medicaid program.
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Additionally, he said, hospitals still have concerns about the Independent Payment Advisory Board, which PPACA empowered to take over from Congress the responsibility of making payment decisions affecting providers. "We have concerns about IPAB and its existence ...and we're on record there thinking that Congress should maintain that decision-making authority," Umbdenstock said.