State authorized to check TennCare recipients - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

State authorized to check TennCare recipients

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A federal judge has authorized the state to check the eligibility of 150,000 TennCare recipients as a way to help state budget restraints.

U.S. District Judge John T. Nixon in Nashville heard arguments in the case Wednesday and ruled on the matter Thursday.

TennCare officials said after the ruling that they will start the review process. They estimate the state spends about $1.2 billion annually to provide health care insurance to the 150,000.

Gov. Phil Bredesen has directed TennCare and other agencies to reduce spending by 15 percent, possibly more, in the face of a revenue shortfall of up to $1 billion.

TennCare is the state's expanded Medicaid program that serves about 1.2 million children, pregnant women and disabled Tennesseans and costs about $7 billion a year. The federal government helps subsidize it.

Attorneys for the enrollees have said the move would put tens of thousands of lives at risk. They also argued that the state had not yet proven that it can fairly determine such eligibility.

Nixon ruled in a case in which the state sought to be released from the terms of a 1987 injunction that banned such reviews. The state said this order opened the possibility of non-eligible individuals remaining in the program.

TennCare officials had provided the court new information they say shows how granting their request could help enrollees maintain their medical benefits during planned budget cuts that include eliminating supplemental payments to hospitals.

Advocates for the enrollees have said about 20,000 "medically fragile children" and another 16,000 enrollees who are severely mentally ill would be among those in jeopardy of losing their benefits.    

Information from: The Tennessean, http://www.tennessean.com              

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)      

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • breaking

    'Home Alone' dad John Heard dies at 72

    'Home Alone' dad John Heard dies at 72

    Saturday, July 22 2017 10:26 AM EDT2017-07-22 14:26:16 GMT
    Saturday, July 22 2017 10:40 AM EDT2017-07-22 14:40:37 GMT

    John Heard appeared in numerous movies and television shows throughout a lengthy acting career, but it was his role as the father of Macauley Culkin's character in two "Home Alone" films that gained him notoriety.

    More >>

    John Heard appeared in numerous movies and television shows throughout a lengthy acting career, but it was his role as the father of Macauley Culkin's character in two "Home Alone" films that gained him notoriety.

    More >>
  • GRAPHIC VIDEO: Teens mock drowning man

    GRAPHIC VIDEO: Teens mock drowning man

    Thursday, July 20 2017 9:14 PM EDT2017-07-21 01:14:47 GMT
    Thursday, July 20 2017 9:39 PM EDT2017-07-21 01:39:28 GMT

    Police say no laws were violated by five teens who made a video of a drowning man and posted it to social media. 

    More >>

    Police say no laws were violated by five teens who made a video of a drowning man and posted it to social media. 

    More >>
  • Man admits he 'flung' infant son, causing his death

    Man admits he 'flung' infant son, causing his death

    Friday, July 21 2017 6:33 AM EDT2017-07-21 10:33:52 GMT
    Cody Bates (Source: LMDC)Cody Bates (Source: LMDC)

    Police responded to a call of an unresponsive three-month-old child on June 9 in an apartment complex in Fern Creek. Officials interviewed multiple people to find out how exactly Preston Amato died.

    More >>

    Police responded to a call of an unresponsive three-month-old child on June 9 in an apartment complex in Fern Creek. Officials interviewed multiple people to find out how exactly Preston Amato died.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly