Medicaid underfunded to start year, director tells lawmakers


JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Mississippi’s Medicaid director says there are straightforward reasons the program is requesting an additional $75 million to get through the final six months of the budget year.

David Dzielak  says legislators didn’t put enough money into Medicaid in the first place. Plus, it was one of the agencies affected by state budget cuts in September.

Medicaid is a government health insurance program for the needy. Many services are mandated by the federal government, which pays most of the tab. Compared to many other programs, there’s relatively little flexibility in how Medicaid can cut costs.

Dzielak tells lawmakers Tuesday that Mississippi’s Medicaid enrollment has decreased the past several months, possibly because people new to the program don’t know they need to re-enroll every year.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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