Congress Passes Legislation to Fund the Government
On Sept. 30, President Donald J. Trump signed into law legislation that temporarily funds the government. The stopgap spending measure — the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021 and Other Extensions Act (H.R. 8337) — would extend current levels of federal funding through Dec. 11. The legislation included several health care provisions:
- Extends Medicare’s geographic practice cost index increases for rural physicians;
- Delays cuts to Medicaid disproportionate share hospitals;
- Extends the Medicare AAP Program loan repayment deadline to one year and lowers the interest rate to 4% for this COVID-19 provider relief funding;
- Allows the National Institutes of Health to provide no-cost extensions to specific multi-year grants set to expire on Sept. 30 that were negatively impacted by the pandemic;
- Extends the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) rare pediatric disease priority review voucher program; and
- Protects Medicare beneficiaries from an expected $50 Part B monthly premium hike and instead places a limit on any premium increases to $4 per month.