Robert Bentley says Alabama will see cuts in Medicaid services due to budget

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Following the Alabama Legislature’s vote to override Gov. Robert Bentley‘s veto of the General Fund budget, Bentley announced announced at a press conference Wednesday the Alabama Medicaid Agency is considering several significant cuts to their services in an effort to operate within the means of the new 2017 budget. Bentley said the budget comes up $85 million short of what the federal government requires for assistance.

“For a number of years we have tried to make our Medicaid agency more effective, more steam-lined, and more efficient,” Bentley said. “We have tried to improve the lives of the people in this state, the one million people who depend on medicaid… and we did that.”

Bentley said he has asked the Medicaid Agency, which provides health care to roughly one million Alabamians, to come up with a list of possible cuts to be reviewed within the coming days.

Medicaid Commissioner Stephanie Azar joined Bentley listing some options up for consideration such as eliminating prescription drug coverage for adults, adult eyeglasses, prosthetics, outpatient dialysis, or requiring patients to go to one big box pharmacy, among others.

“I think today it is very important for recipients to know that their access to care is at risk and for the Medicaid providers in the state to start preparing for the impact of these cuts,” Azar said.

The governor has previously suggested he might call a special session on Medicaid funding, but said Wednesday that he has yet to make a decision.

“We are going to have to make some very tough decisions. After we look at the options, we will make those tough decisions,” said Bentley.

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4 Comments

  1. Lisa Patterson on

    Why are the Special needs individuals , who depend on their parents, always get the cuts? Why are the people in jail needing a newer jail-house when our people have to make ends meet as it is? We as parents are not going to be able to survive any more cuts. There are no food stamps for the adults as it is, yet the felons are receiving all these benefits. why is it Medicaid that is being targeted? These Individuals need all the funds they can get to live at home and in group homes with out being cut!! I have worked with them 23 yrs. and have an Autisitc son to take care of. they are coming out of the wood-work too! you will not see this end, as it is getting worse and they cannot be without housing, clothes, utilities etc. we help with these items to stay home because their small cks are the only monies some of them have to live. you check every dime they spend but let the felons have appts. and food stamps. How off is this reasoning? Some deserve to live free, but the point is most of ours have to have help to live and the parents cannot do it alone.Most of these people have to have meds to survive and if you do not have an individual living in your home, taking care of them, you have no idea what we encounter on a day to day basis. We need this money. it is not an entitlement. It is a desperate need! They do not change without help and it will only get worse. Any Doctor can varefy these facts! I have had them evicted because a parent cannot work due to taking care of the son, and Father in hosp. How can the State not understand that disabilities do not go away and are very expensive.We need all the help we can get. what we get is not even enough to reach the surface for most and I have serve many over the yrs. we know how much money they have and can’t even take a vacation. We feels like we are “closed in” also! Our own bodies cannot hold up to do this work all the time, even with a little help. So, this is a request to see if it will get read to help out the people with developmental disabilities!! someone needs to hear this. Thanks.

  2. Terry S. Bradley on

    The Republican led stronghold within the state of Alabama reaches a new low in abandoning the needs of 1 million of it’s own citizen’s. Many of which gave there all in their efforts to support the very state many were born an raised in. Though unlike the people the irresponsible self serving interest of the republican party has lead our state a direction to which they, not us should dearly pay. We will be the first state in the Untied States of America to allow our most needy to slip further in distress while allowing poverty to grow at rate to top the list among all states. In effect we may indeed become the first state to lose the Medicaid program since it’s conception. While as well leading the nation in new prison construction. Education reduction and better pay for all Alabamians. As republican’s spent time working fiercely to not only block the minimum wage hike in Birmingham, Al But putting in place a law restricting to which prevents any higher pay than the federal law allows. The oppression imposed by the stronghold republicans. Should really face a national investigation and possible government over sight to which may be our only hope. As it appears one must now wonder to run toward the rising sea levels or face the slow death by starvation and warmongering oppression tactics intent to decimate it’s own society and imprison even more to be enslaved as the relentless attacks on the poor far overreach the separation of church and state as our problems only grow beyond what can be foreseen coming in the near future as the blind are being crippled by darkness.

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