BP settlement bill could help fund Medicaid

BP settlement bill could help fund Medicaid

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Lawmakers may have found more money for Medicaid, but time is running out to pass it.

On Wednesday, the House General Fund Committee approved a bill that details what to do with money from the BP settlement.

Most of the money would go towards paying off the state's debts and road projects in the coastal region. However, the bill also provides $55 million in
additional funds for Medicaid.

The state's biggest agency faces an $85 million shortfall. Without more funding, doctors would leave the state and some hospitals may close, according to Medicaid Commissioner Stephanie Azar.

The additional $55 million would help reduce potential cuts, and Azar said it could put the transformation into a system of regional care organizations back on the table. Azar said some cuts would still likely be necessary though to make up the $30 million difference.

Getting these additional funds may be a race against the clock. Lawmakers have three legislative days remaining, and all of them will be required to pass the bill. It still must go through the House, a Senate committee and the Senate itself before becoming law.

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