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The Helena Arkansas Daily World - Helena, AR
  • Arkansas House passes 'private option' Medicaid funds

  • A plan for Arkansas to use federal Medicaid funds to buy private insurance for low-income residents has cleared its final hurdle in the state House.
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  • A plan for Arkansas to use federal Medicaid funds to buy private insurance for low-income residents has cleared its final hurdle in the state House. House members voted 77-23 Tuesday morning after a half-hour debate. The proposal had fallen six votes short Monday of the 75 votes needed to move the bill to the Senate. The Senate already approved a bill setting up the program but has not yet reached the three-fourths majority needed to OK the attached budget bill. Some Republican leaders and Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe are promoting the idea as an alternative to expanding Medicaid enrollment under the federal health care law. The program's implementation also hinges on final approval from federal officials.
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