Florida lawmakers' quest to expand a Medicaid privatization program statewide has been dealt a blow from federal health officials.
The state will not be allowed to charge $10 monthly premiums to Medicaid beneficiaries, nor can they charge a $100 co-pay for non-emergency ER visits.
The controversial privatization program has been running in 5 counties since 2006. Critics say patients struggle to get doctor appointments and physicians have dropped out of the program, saying the health plans deny the treatments they prescribe.
Supporters say the statewide privatization is the only way to reign in the state's more than $20 billion Medicaid budget. Source: Modern Healthcare
Federal health officials sent a letter to the state Thursday citing statutes about why they couldn't impose such fees on nearly 3 million of the state's poorest patients.