FL Insurers Get Medicaid Funding Boost

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) _ Health officials have agreed to give insurers a 7.7 percent rate increase in the fledgling Medicaid managed care program, in what has been a contentious battle between Gov. Rick Scott, the insurers and hospitals.

The Republican governor lobbied hard to get federal approval for the statewide managed care program, which launched last year. He promised it would save money and improve health care for more than 3 million low-income and disabled Floridians.

But health insurers asked for a 12 percent rate increase from the state, warning they are losing money. Scott’s administration had warned that any increase could negate the roughly 5 percent savings the program generated.

The governor strongly opposes pumping any additional state funds into the Medicaid program. He wasn’t happy when state lawmakers invested $400 million earlier this year in order to help hospitals that were losing other types of federal aid.