Medicaid up for big debates at Mississippi Capitol in 2018

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Mississippi legislators in 2018 are expected to bicker over Medicaid, a government health insurance program that consumes a large portion of the state budget and covers about 1 in every 4 residents.

The program comes up for a thorough review every few years, and 2018 is one of them.

Legislators could discuss a wide range of issues, including managed-care contracts with private companies. Most Medicaid recipients are in managed care, and supporters say it is designed to control costs. However, critics say managed care creates another layer of bureaucracy for health care providers.

The state-funded part of Medicaid budget was set at about $920 million for the year that started July 1. Program leaders are requesting an additional $47 million to cover costs through June 30.

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