January 16, 2013
In the current fiscal year, Via Christi Health — which includes this hospital on St. Francis in Wichita — is expected to receive almost $13 million from the disproportionate share payments, the most of any health care provider in the state. Hospitals use the money, a mix of federal and state dollars, to offset some of the costs of caring for the uninsured. Under the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, those payments are to be significantly reduced in anticipation of more people being covered by Medicaid. However, the U.S. Supreme Court ruling gave states the option to not expand Medicaid — meaning if Kansas chooses not to expand its Medicaid program, the state's hospitals face the loss of significant funding and may have to cut staff or services, officials said.