"We already are underpaid, and then you're looking at the cuts that are built into the Affordable Care Act, which are going to be $17 billion here in California between now and 2020, and then you add these additional cuts, hospitals can't sustain that. Sequestration makes an already very difficult situation worse," says CHA spokeswoman Jan Emerson-Shea.
Hospitals are also facing a cap on payments for outpatient services in hospitals. Those limits, proposed by the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission could save the federal government about $1 billion. The AHA and three other hospital associations are urging Congress to oppose the move.
The sequester has been on the table since last year when first, Congress, then, a joint committee of Congress, could not agree to a budget that included massive federal deficit reductions. With just three months remaining before the sequester goes into effect, both sides are under pressure to resolve their partisan stalemate.