As Congress Lurches Towards Debt Ceiling Debacle, Talk of ACA Diminishes | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

As Congress Lurches Towards Debt Ceiling Debacle, Talk of ACA Diminishes

October 14, 2013
by Mark Hagland
| Reprints
The crisis over the federal shutdown and lifting the debt ceiling moves further away from the ACA
Click To View Gallery

With the U.S. Department of the Treasury exhausting its ability to borrow money in just a few days, negotiations between Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Congress lurched from one potential solution to the combined federal shutdown/debt ceiling increase crisis to another over the weekend. Significantly, discussion of the funding of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) continued to fade into the background, though it was ACA funding that was at issue at the start of the crisis, when the federal government shut down on Oct. 1, as House Republicans refused to vote on a continuing resolution that did not defund President Obama's signature domestic legislative achievement.

As the Washington Post's Lori Montgomery and Rosalind S. Helderman reported on Monday morning, "What started as a mad dash to strike a deal to lift the federal debt limit slowed to a crawl over the weekend as stalemated Senate leaders waited nervously to see whether global markets would plunge Monday morning and drive the other side toward compromise."

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), in negotiations with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), introduced the question of whether sequestration-imposed federal budget cuts, which have strongly impact healthcare providers, should continue into 2014 or not. McConnell indicated an unwillingness to address that question.

But with federal government borrowing capability ending on Oct. 17, members of Congress were under increasing pressure to resolve both issues quickly, in the face of a potentially devastating global economic impact of the U.S. government's inability to raise its debt limit. The International Monetory Fund's Christine Lagarde warned on Sunday that American lawmakers risk causing a "massive disruption the world over" that could tip the global economuy into another recession.




Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More



KLAS Research: Small Hospitals’ Buying Decisions Impacting EMR Market Share

A new KLAS Research report tracks shifts in electronic medical record (EMR) vendor market share among acute care hospitals, and finds that smaller hospitals are seeking technology solutions that meet their needs and limited budgets, and these contracts are making a mark on the EMR market.

Survey: Majority of Providers Predict Success for New Generic Drug Company, Project Rx

Back in January, four health systems, in consultation with the VA, announced a collaboration to develop a new, not-for-profit generic drug company. A survey has found that 90 percent of providers say they would become customers of the new venture.

Personalized Medicine Awareness Low Among U.S. Adults, Survey Finds

Genetics and personalized medicine are not top of mind for the general public in the U.S., according to a recent survey from GenomeWeb and the Personalized Medicine Coalition.

Industry Organizations Praise Senate Passage of VA Mission Act

The U.S. Senate on Wednesday passed, by a vote of 92-5, a major Veterans Affairs (VA) reform bill that includes health IT-related provisions to improve health data exchange between VA healthcare providers and community care providers.

NIH Issues Funding Announcement for All of Us Genomic Research Program

The National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) “All of Us” Research Program has issued a funding announcement for genome centers to generate genotype and whole genome sequence data from participants’ biosamples.

MGMA: Physician Compensation Data Illustrates Nationwide PCP Shortage

Primary care physicians’ compensation rose by more than 10 percent over the past five years, representing an increase which is nearly double that of specialty physicians’ compensation over the same period, according to the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA).