More on Medicare and Medicaid and the debt ceiling deal…

Yes, it was insane that the United States came as close as it did to default. Even in this weekend’s debate on the appropriateness of Standard & Poor’s decision to downgrade the nation’s credit rating, no one disputes that. (The questions were much more whether the U.S. still is the safest investment in the world, the $2 trillion math error by the rating firm, and the standing of Standard & Poor’s to make such a call.)

But our question is what the impact of the debt ceiling deal will be on health care.

The new issue of Health Wonk Review, hosted by Joe Paduda this week, highlights a post that predicts significant Medicare cuts to providers like hospitals, drug companies, and Medicare Advantage insurers. (This week’s edition also spotlights our Health Access blog post on what Exchanges should be.)

Katherine Howitt at Community Catalyst gives a breakdown on the impact on Medicaid–and suggests the deal doesn’t cut Medicaid or save Medicaid, but merely sets up the next fight on health care issues, including this crucial program.

And Suzy Khimm, part of the new health policy “dream team” of reporters/bloggers at the Washington Post, including Ezra Klein (now also including Sarah Kliff), also report on the impact of the debt ceiling deal on the health reform law as a whole.

Again, our advocacy may have made the difference is protecting health care from severe cuts, but we need to be vigilant and active as the process continues.

Health Access California promotes quality, affordable health care for all Californians.
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