Bill to fully fund Medicaid providers gets initial OK in House

Sam Wilson

A bill to bring the state’s Medicaid reimbursement rates in line with a recent study commissioned by the state won a substantial, bipartisan endorsement in the House.

The preliminary vote on House Bill 649 followed an impassioned debate about the state’s role in ensuring adequate health care for the elderly, disabled and other vulnerable populations in Montana. The bill cleared a second reading by a 65-35 margin.

“This policy before you affects 20,000 jobs and tens of thousands of Montanans. It affects children who are chained to an oxygen tank,” Rep. Mary Caferro, D-Helena, the bill’s sponsor, said. “It affects women who are caring for their loved ones who has Alzheimer’s or dementia. It affects the physically disabled man who is waiting for someone to show up in the morning to help him bathe, get dressed and drive him to work so that he can have the freedom of economic independence.”

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Rep. Mary Caferro, D-Helena, joined by county commissioners from across Montana speaks at a press conference in the state

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