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Wednesday, March 24, 2010 - 12:15pm

Physicans Cry Foul Over Bed Tax

Privately-owned surgical centers are fighting a proposed 1.45 percent bed tax which passed an appropriations committee this week.

They say they were not part of the negotiations and are carrying a higher burden.

The so-called "bed tax" would be assessed to hospitals and private, outpatient surgery centers.

Hospital lobbyists praised the compromise bill because in exchange for the tax their hospitals would get a higher rate of Medicaid reimbursement. But that same benefit does not go to the private centers.

Kathy Bradshaw is with the Georgia Society of the American College of Surgeons.

"It was represented yesterday that everybody that was effected was at the table and that is not the case. The physicians were not there. We are opposed to physician-owned ambulatory centers being included in this tax."

Governor Perdue wants the tax to plug a medicaid budget hole. As it currently stands, it is expected to earn the state $175 million.

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