Will Medicaid Providers Benefit from Texas’s $27 Billion Budget Windfall?

Thanks to the excessive prices for oil products due to the attempted embargo of Russian oil to punish the country for its war on Ukraine, the Texas state budget will benefit to the tune of some $27 billion, according to Comptroller Glenn Hegar, who released an estimate of state finances this week

Huge state budget

This means legislators will have an estimated budget of $149.07 billion in general funds to expend this coming legislative session.  In the last legislative session, they had $112.5 billion to spend

A further boon of some $3.5 billion will go into the Legislative rainy day fund, giving legislators access to another $13.5 billion.

Who will benefit?

How state legislators will spend this bonanza is the question.

According to the Texas Tribune, "When asked how lawmakers should spend the money, Hegar recommended funding water infrastructure, road infrastructure and broadband internet connectivity. A panel of lawmakers this week asked Hegar for recommendations, and Hegar also mentioned a need to address rising property taxes and increase pay for state employees, especially since Texas is growing by 1,000 people per day."

Opportunity for a fee increase for Medicaid providers?

This $27 billion windfall represents an opportunity for Medicaid providers, especially dental providers, to seek an increase in their rate schedule to reflect the reality of inflation and costs associated with delivering services. 

Bare-bones dental fees reduced by 2% over the last decade have been detrimental to providers in the current economic climate. 

We hope legislators will take the opportunity to review Medicaid provider fees in light of this budget bonanza.

 

 

 

12 Responses

  • Hopefully this is the opportunity to allocate more money towards Medicaid dental fees. Being a Medicaid dentist for many years, I have seen the reimbursements consistently dwindling while overhead costs constantly creep higher. With these new red hot inflation numbers, the situation is only bound to get worse. Operating on razor thin margins has been incredibly challenging and increasingly unsustainable. Please consider allocating more money to the Medicaid dental program to help better serve the underserved children of texas.

  • In today’s economic climate involving runaway record inflation, continued supply chain difficulties, skyrocketing materials costs, a fee increase for Medicaid providers is absolutely necessary. The ability to provide care for underserved populations was becoming increasingly difficult prior to these new challenges. As there doesn’t seem any end in sight to the increase in operating costs, I fear that the people who need access to care may find their options becoming even more limited.

  • This would be a great usage of funds to increase the fee schedule. With supplies costing so much and becoming harder to retain staff, it would be helpful to see fees increase for the first time since 2006 I believe. Fee increases can help us serve these children who need it while not having to make tough decisions about staff and materials

  • Yes I hope the fees are increased so we can continue to provide exceptional care to those in need.

  • I’m afraid of what will happen if these funds are not properly distributed to our bleeding industry. For those of us who have remained helping the underserved children of Texas, we are doing so at a break even point. We are going on TWO DECADES of stagnant fees. With skyrocketing inflation and a recession inevitably looming, many of us will not be able to continue. This will directly lead to these children losing their access to much needed care.

  • Being a small practice hit with current increase in cost on everything is tough. We, like many other offices, have had to let go of staff. There has not been a fee increase for a very long time while inflation has gone through the roof. A fee increase for medicaid providers will help everyone. Specially the underserved community.

  • Our office opened its doors in February of 2022 with the intention to help the under served community with their dental needs.The office’s low end prices make it difficult to continuously serve those in need, meet production goals and maintain supply costs due the inflation.It is taking a toll on us.Any extension of benefits that could be extended to our field would greatly allow for us to keep our staff and be able to keep our doors open.If we don’t have the necessary qualified staff be would not be able to serve our community.

    • Why wouldn’t we spend a little of that fortune to take care of those that are most vulnerable, underprivileged children? Would make too much sense. Access to care is a real issue.

  • Dental providers in particular have suffered from declining reimbursement rates for several years. In fact, over the last decade, reimbursement rates for basic services have been reduced by 2%. Inflation and other costs associated with providing dental services have increased significantly during this time period. As such, we hope legislators will take this opportunity to review Medicaid provider fees in light of current economic conditions and make adjustments accordingly. The state will lose many providers and it will negatively impact the economy tremendously if reimbursement fees are not increased. I hope our state leaders increase reimbursement fees. It’s the best thing for these kids to have good options for providers instead of limited overcrowded and overworked options. At minimum I hope they do the right thing for the economy.

  • I hope the Texas government will do the right thing and increase reimbursements for Medicaid patients in the state. Crazy that it has not increased them, meanwhile the prices of everything else increase. How are Medicaid offices supposed to stay afloat without greatly reducing the ability to provide high quality care.

  • Everything has its breaking point. If those in Texas government continues to put themselves and their political games first, then everyone else will suffer one way or another. With staff wages shooting up, staggering inflation and soaring supply costs the writing is on the wall for us. We will not be able to sustain this for much longer. Sadly, in the very near future, it just will not make sense to do business in this state for much longer.

  • It has been increasingly difficult to treat Medicaid patients throughout the years and especially including during the pandemic. With the current economic climate, soaring inflation, and labor costs, it is almost impossible to viabliy treat Medicaid patients. Offices will be forced to close or not accept Medicaid, and access to quality care will decrease.

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