Spokeswoman: Quinn Wants To Take On Ballooning Medicaid Costs

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (CBS) — A spokeswoman says Gov. Pat Quinn wants to address the problem of skyrocketing Medicaid costs in Illinois, but state legislators are not cooperating.

As WBBM Newsradio’s Alex Degman reports, a Civic Federation report says Medicaid costs are increasing 6 percent a year, and unpaid Medicaid bills could increase to $23 billion by 2017.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Alex Degman reports

“What’s new is really that the Medicaid growth – the growth that’s the public-funded health care program for those people that are either the poorest or the most vulnerable – is growing at such a rate that it is going to swamp as well as the pension crisis in the State of Illinois,” Civic Federation President Laurence Msall said Monday.

The Civic Federation found the state could face $35 billion in unpaid bills by 2017, years after the temporary tax increase expires.

Kelly Kraft, spokeswoman for the Gov. Pat Quinn’s budget office, says the governor wants to address the problem, but lawmakers so far have not.

“We did last year call for a reimbursement rate reduction, but there’s not an appetite to do that,” Kraft said. “We’re going to continue to have our efforts become a reality. As I’ve mentioned, we need an aggressive restructuring of the Medicaid system.”

Kraft couldn’t say what specific changes the Office of Management and Budget is seeking to the Medicaid system, but says Quinn last year proposed a 6 percent cut in the Medicaid reimbursement rate.

  • http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/01/31/emanuel-to-quinn-deal-with-pension-debt-now/ Emanuel To Quinn: Deal With Pension Debt Now « CBS Chicago

    […] A spokeswoman says Quinn wants to take on the Medicaid crisis, but so far, lawmakers have failed to … […]

  • Roberta Waker

    Gov. Quinn. Maybe you need to get people off of Medicaid that shouldn’t be getting it in the first place. There would be a substantial savings in requalifying some people BEFORE you think about cuts. Same applies for people getting SSD; many of them could be working and are healthier than most people I know that ARE working.

  • Afro

    Governor maybe you should listen to the law makers if you want them to listen to you. They (Democrats and Republicans) work their ass off on a piece of legislation that you say you will veto if it comes to your desk even before you know whats in it ie HB 148 but you want them to listen to you, LMAO

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