On Wednesday, the House Appropriations Committee on a 35-22 party-line vote approved a $358 billion portion of an $825 billion economic stimulus package that falls under the jurisdiction of the panel and includes funds for health care information technology investments and community health centers, the AP/Philadelphia Inquirer reports (Taylor, AP/Philadelphia Inquirer, 1/22).
The House Ways and Means Committee and the House Energy and Commerce Committee plan to hold mark ups on the portions of the stimulus package that fall under their jurisdiction on Thursday. Both committees likely will consider the portion of the stimulus package that includes $20 billion for health care IT, although some of the language for that portion of the legislation falls under the jurisdiction of the Energy and Commerce Committee alone, according to a Ways and Means Committee spokesperson. In addition, both committees will consider the portion of the bill that would expand access to COBRA and provide federal subsidies for the program. The Energy and Commerce Committee also will consider the portion of the bill that includes almost $96 billion for Medicaid, including $87 billion in additional reimbursements to state governments. The remainder would provide funds to allow states to expand Medicaid coverage low-income residents who lose their jobs through 2010.