Calif. Dems balking on more Medicaid cuts; Big jump in Minnesota Medicaid rolls

A selection of state Medicaid news from California, Missouri, Illinois and Minnesota.

The Associated Press/San Francisco Chronicle: Democrats Plan Budget Vote As Brown Demands Cuts
Democratic legislative leaders announced Wednesday that they plan to move forward with their proposal to address California's $15.7 billion deficit even though Gov. Jerry Brown hasn't signed off on the plan. ... Democrats refused to cut an additional $1.2 billion on programs for the poor, particularly the welfare-to-work program CalWORKS; childcare; In-Home Supportive Services, which provides care for the sick and disabled in their homes; low-cost health insurance known as Healthy Families; and Medi-Cal, California's Medicaid program (Lin, 6/13).

Sacramento Bee: California Democrats Ready To Send Gov. Jerry Brown A Budget That Rejects $1 Billion In Cuts
In previous years, Democrats agreed to reduce the amount of time welfare recipients could receive aid, slashed SSI/SSP payments for low-income elderly and eliminated Medi-Cal services such as dental care for adults. ... But Democrats this time plan to adopt very few safety-net cuts that reduce the level of services below what the state now provides (Yamamura, 6/14).

California Healthline: State Under Fire For Adult Service Denials, Appeals
Dana O'Callaghan, a social worker for Americare Adult Day Health Center in San Diego, accompanied a young mentally ill patient to an appeals hearing last week -- one of the first of approximately 1,800 scheduled appeals of denial of Medi-Cal eligibility for California's new Community Based Adult Services program for adult day health care. … Appeal hearings started May 30. State officials said 1,800 appeals have been filed so far. ... The number of denials could represent significant savings for the state (Gorn, 6/14).

Minneapolis Star Tribune: Medicaid Numbers Spike In Minnesota
The number of Minnesotans on Medicaid shot up at nearly twice the national rate over the past two years, while state costs soared by 40 percent to surpass $4 billion for the first time. There now are about 733,000 Minnesotans in the state-federal health insurance program for the poor -- called Medical Assistance in Minnesota ... While the weakened economy explains most of the rising Medicaid rolls in other states, much of Minnesota's increase came when Gov. Mark Dayton expanded the program by 80,000 people last year under an option in the federal Affordable Care Act (Wolfe, 6/13).

The Associated Press/St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Mo. To Get Additional Medicaid Money For Home Care
Missouri could receive about $100 million of additional Medicaid funds over several years under a federal program intended to encourage more home- and community-based services for the elderly and disabled. The federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced Wednesday that Missouri was one of four additional states approved for the program (6/13).

Chicago Tribune:  Quinn To Sign Medicaid Cuts, Cigarette Tax Hike
Gov. Pat Quinn is scheduled to sign a package of bills into law Thursday that will slash health care coverage for the poor and hike cigarette taxes by $1-a-pack to help pay for the struggling Medicaid program, his office confirmed late Wednesday. The $1.6 billion in cuts to the program come amid the state's ongoing budget problems despite last year's major income tax increase (Garcia, 6/13).

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.orgThis article was reprinted from with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.

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