With the decision to abandon further efforts to repeal and replace parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Congress is shifting their attention to a number of legislative priorities important to health care providers in South Dakota and across the country.

The immediate focus areas include:

  • Securing funding for the cost-sharing reductions (CSR) to help stabilize the Health Insurance Marketplace
  • Extending funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)
  • Stopping the Medicaid DSH cuts that will impact financial assistance for vulnerable populations
  • Extending critical rural programs and policies that help ensure care in rural communities
  • Urging CMS to withdraw its proposal of drastic cuts to payments for drugs acquired under the 340B drug pricing program

Although action related to the ACA could return in a variety of ways, it appears that Republican leaders do not plan to couple it with tax reform as they did not include specific repeal reconciliation instructions in the fiscal year 2018 budget resolution. However, they could use the FY 2019 budget resolution for repeal instructions.

We have joined with many others in urging Congress to return to “regular order” and a bipartisan effort to address the challenging issues facing our health care system that preserve the gains in coverage achieved over the past several years.