Pa. sees Medicaid funding cut
HARRISBURG - A drop in the amount of federal Medicaid matching dollars for Pennsylvania's services for the poor and disabled could be the latest significant budget challenge facing the state, Corbett administration officials said Tuesday.
Public Welfare Secretary Beverly Mackereth wrote Tuesday to the director of the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) out of concern that Pennsylvania will lose about $325 million in federal Medicaid funding next year.
Mackereth asked the federal agency to check on an estimate that Pennsylvania's formula-driven Medicaid matching funds will drop by 1.7 percentage points from the current federal fiscal year to the federal fiscal year that begins Oct. 1, 2014.
Mackereth called that the biggest decrease in Pennsylvania's federal Medicaid match in decades, and warned that cuts in benefits and in payments to doctors and hospitals could result.
A spokeswoman for the federal agency did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday afternoon.
Mackereth's department receives about $15 billion a year in federal funding for a wide range of safety-net programs and human services, primarily health care for the poor and nursing care for the elderly.