KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Medicaid: Colo. Gov. Dismisses GOP Call For Waivers; Fla. Sanctions Docs

Medicaid news is popping up in Colorado and Florida.

Denver Post: Hickenlooper Rejects Colorado GOP Call To Seek Medicaid Waiver
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper on Thursday rejected a Republican suggestion that he seek a federal waiver to rules governing Medicaid to balance the state budget. The Democratic governor's reaction comes amid a standoff with Republicans over suspending a property-tax break for seniors that costs the state $100 million a year (Hoover, 11/18).

The Associated Press/Denver Post: Hickenlooper: Medicaid Waivers Not A Budget Option
Medicaid will account for nearly 82 percent of the increase in the state's general fund spending, as cuts to education and public colleges continue next year. Republicans have suggested that the state should explore the possibility of getting waivers from the fedral government that will allow Colorado to spend less on Medicaid (Moreno, 11/17).

ProPublica: Florida Sanctions Top Medicaid Prescribers — But Only After A Shove
At Dr. Huberto Merayo’s bustling psychiatry practice in Coral Gables, Fla., hundreds of poor patients on Medicaid walked away each year with prescriptions for powerful antipsychotic drugs. ... Merayo’s situation is one of at least three in which Florida allowed physicians to keep treating and prescribing drugs to the poor amid clear signs of possible misconduct. ... Medicaid programs across the country have long had evidence that physicians have been prescribing risky drugs in excess and perhaps to the wrong patients (Ornstein and Weber, 11/17).

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