Brief The Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital Payment Program
Background and Issues
Teresa A. Coughlin, David Liska
Display Date
Download Report
(156.47 KB)

Federal law requires state Medicaid agencies to take into account the situation of hospitals that serve a disproportionate number of low-income patients with special needs when determining payment rates for inpatient hospital care. Expenditures for this Medicaid disproportionate share hospital (DSH) payment now account for 1 of every 11 (federal and state) dollars spent on Medicaid in 1996. This policy brief describes the origins and evolution of DSH; discusses DSH legislation enacted during the 1990s when DSH expenditures first began to escalate; and highlights the federal DSH provisions included in the Balanced Budget Act of 1997.
Research Areas Health and health care Social safety net
Tags Health insurance Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program