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How the Sequester is Killing Healthcare Jobs

Sequester-driven budget cuts to Medicare are threatening to spur massive job cuts in the healthcare industry.

And the pain doesn't stop there - the sequester cuts are already making healthcare harder to obtain for some Medicare patients.

Unfortunately, this is just the beginning. The longer Congress allows sequestration to continue, the deeper the cuts will go and the more widespread their impact.

When President Barack Obama and Congress failed to reach agreement on $1.2 trillion in cuts to federal spending before March 30 -- as mandated by the Budget Control Act of 2011 -- the sequester kicked in.

Medicare providers faced mandatory 2% across-the-board reductions in their reimbursements.

After the cuts went into effect on April 1, hospitals, doctors, insurers, prescription drug plans, and other healthcare providers immediately felt the impact.

In short, the sequester is delivering precisely the kind of broad, damaging and indiscriminate cuts that politicians warned would happen.

And as each day passes, the drastic consequences grow worse.

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Republican Budget Plan Targets Medicare With $4 Trillion in Total Spending Cuts

House Republicans will release their 2012 budget plan today (Tuesday), proposing more than $4 trillion in cuts over the next decade and trimming billions of dollars from Medicare expenses.

House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul D. Ryan, R-WI, prepared the spending outline for the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1.

Ryan told Fox News Sunday that U.S. President Barack Obama was "punting on the budget and not doing a thing to prevent a debt crisis, which every single economist tells us is coming sooner rather than later in this country."

He said the plan went beyond the recommendations of President Obama's debt commission because they kept spending too high to significantly reduce the deficit.

Ryan's proposal reshapes the Medicare program to tackle its soaring costs. Medicare cost $396.5 billion in 2010 and is projected to rise to $502.8 billion in 2016.

"You have to address the drivers of our debt," Ryan told Fox News Sunday. "We need to engage with the American people on a fact-based budget, on stopping politicians from making empty promises to people and talk to the country about what is necessary to fix these problems."

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