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Pam Bondi says she’ll join Rick Scott in Medicaid lawsuit

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Attorney General Pam Bondi said she will help Gov. Rick Scott sue the federal Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services for withholding supplemental Medicaid funding for Florida’s hospitals. In a release Bondi said her office “led the lawsuit that stopped the federal government from forcing states to expand Medicaid and we will not sit by while the Obama administration holds hostage LIP funding in an effort to force the expansion here in Florida.” Scott’s office on Thursday issued a statement…

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Top Medicaid official warns feds not to ‘coerce’ state into expansion

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One day after receiving a letter from the federal government advising that uncompensated care pools were not a wise use of federal tax payer dollars, Florida’s leading Medicaid official fired off a letter  to the Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday accusing the federal government of coercing Florida into expanding the Medicaid program. “(T)he U.S. Supreme Court explicitly warned the federal government against attempting to coerce states into participating in Medicaid expansion — yet that appears to be…

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Congressional Republicans send letter to feds: Don’t hold LIP hostage

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Six Republicans in Florida’s congressional delegation sent a letter to the acing director of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services April 14, saying that supplemental Medicaid funding should not be held “hostage” for a statewide expansion of Medicaid. The letter — signed by U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and U.S. Reps. Gus Bilirakis,  Curt Clawson,  Richard Nugent,  Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, and  Ted Yoho — asks that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services come to an agreement “in principle” by mid-April to keep Low Income Pool funding, which helps pay for…

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Feds to Florida: Medicaid expansion is better use of tax dollars

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The federal government on Tuesday sent a letter to Deputy Medicaid Director Justin Senior saying that expanding Medicaid to low-income, uninsured Floridians is a better use of tax dollars than establishing Medicaid supplemental spending formulas such as the Low Income Pool. Department of Health and Human Services Acting Director Vikki Wachino said in the April 14 letter  that “coverage rather than uncompensated care pools is the best way to secure affordable access coverage to health care for low-income individuals, and…

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Feds temporarily cut off LIP talks with state, Dudek says

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The federal government has temporarily cut off Low Income Pool negotiations with Florida,  making it difficult for the Legislature to complete its budget and bring the regular legislative session to an end on time. Agency for Health Care Administration Secretary Liz Dudek sent a statement to the press late Wednesday night announcing that the chief negotiator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Eliot Fishman, will not be available for at least two weeks. “This was sudden and disappointing…

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No supplemental Medicaid dollars? Then no tax breaks or member projects, says Senate budget chief

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Budget chief state Sen. Tom Lee said on Wednesday that tax cuts and member projects will be put on hold in the Senate until there is some resolution of whether Florida will receive additional Medicaid supplemental dollars to help pay hospitals, federally qualified health centers and Medicaid HMOs. After a marathon seven-plus-hour meeting where the committee tackled everything from Medicaid expansion, to land-buying, to education reforms, Lee said in a press availability with reporters that the $800 million in tax…

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How do hospitals fare under new Senate plan? Check and see

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In hopes of hanging on to a $2 billion pool of supplemental Medicaid dollars the state uses to help fund hospitals, federally qualified health centers, HMOs and other parts of Florida’s healthcare delivery system, the Florida Senate late last week proposed a new plan that it hopes the federal government will approve. So, just how much can hospitals expect to get under a redesigned Low Income Pool, or LIP  formula?  A spreadsheet released by the Senate late Friday showed that, if…

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