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Court hears closing arguements in children's Medicaid challenge

Friday marked closing arguments in a lawsuit over the state’s Medicaid program that’s being going on since 2005. Lynn Hatter reports the suit was brought by a group of doctors and parents who say children on Medicaid don’t have access to quality care.

Dr. Louis St. Petery  heads the Florida Pediatric Society, one of the groups that filed the lawsuit. He says the lack of funding for Medicaid is a part of the lawsuit that most people may be familiar with, but there’s another issue that’s just as important. Petery says many children are incorrectly dropped from Medicaid because the state agencies that oversee it-- the Department of Children and Families, and the Agency for Healthcare Administration-- don’t coordinate with one another.

“It requires that the agencies that administer Medicaid get together and solve the problem. DCR needs to get out of its silo and AHCA needs to get out of its silo and talk to each other to solve the problem.”

A ruling in the case is expected by the end of June and Petery says he expects the outcome to be appealed. 

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Lynn Hatter is a Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative. 

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