Conn. Lawmakers Restore Medicaid Program For Seniors, Disabled
The special session vote adds back $54 million for a program that uses Medicaid funding to help low-income residents pay their Medicare premiums and other expenses. However, the governor is threatening to veto the bill. Also, Iowa's governor says savings from the Medicaid managed care program there are still substantial, even though they don't come close to what was promised, and South Dakota's program was able to shift some costs to the federal government.
Hartford (Conn.) Courant:
Despite Veto Threat, Legislature Restores Medicaid Cuts
Despite a veto threat, the legislature defied Gov. Dannel P. Malloy by voting in special session Monday to restore $54 million for the popular Medicare Savings Program that affects more than 100,000 people. Lawmakers had originally cut funding last year for the program, which uses Medicaid money to allow low-income senior citizens and the disabled to pay for Part B premiums, co-pays, and deductibles. Seniors began complaining when they learned late last year that the money had been cut as part of the bipartisan state budget that was signed into law on Halloween. Hearing the outcry, the legislature crafted a bipartisan plan in recent weeks to restore the money. (Keating, 1/8)
The CT Mirror:
General Assembly Reverses Cuts To Medicare Program
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy — who has pledged to veto the measure — and others insist that the means used to restore $54 million to the Medicare Savings Program worsened the already deficit-plagued state budget. “We need to make sure, particularly with the little amount of money that we have — with the financial problems that we have in this state — that we take care of people who need our help the most,” House Minority Leader Themis Klarides, R-Derby, said shortly after House session. (Phaneuf, 1/8)
Des Moines Register:
Reynolds: Managed Care Still Generating 'Significant Savings,'
Gov. Kim Reynolds defended Iowa's switch to privatized Medicaid on Monday, saying it is still expected to generate "significant savings" despite a new report suggesting this year's savings could be 80 percent less than predicted. (Pfannenstiel and Leys, 1/8)
Rapid City (S.D.) Journal:
State Saves $600K By Shifting Medicaid Expenses To Feds
Care coordination agreements signed Nov. 13 by three major providers of Medicaid services to tribal members in South Dakota shifted a portion of taxpayer-subsidized expenses away from the state's general fund, officials said Monday. Federal government officials accepted the expenses instead. The amounts that became additional federal responsibility for November and December totaled $629,371, said state Health Secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon. (Mercer, 1/8)