Florida Officials Say Medicaid Reimbursement Formula Will Drive Deficit

Florida state legislators have written to their U.S. Senators to urge them address what they called a "serious flaw" in the formula that determines of how much money the state's Medicaid program receives from the federal government, Health News Florida reports. 

The letter, sent Tuesday to U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson and George LeMieux, cautioned that Florida would be on the hook for $668 million that it doesn't have next year, or have to cut Medicaid benefits, if Washington doesn't act. "Florida received a significant bump in its (Federal Medical Assistance Percentage) when Congress passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, but that increased contribution is slated to end Dec. 31, 2010. If the underlying formula isn't addressed, Atwater said in his letter, Florida would have to spend an additional $668 million in state dollars to continue to fund Medicaid services at current levels." A deficit in Florida could be as high as $2.6 billion soon, according to the latest budget projections, Health News Florida reports (Stexton, 11/11).

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