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Tennessee, Federal Health Officials Agree On TennCare Funding Waiver

Armen Hareyan's picture

TennCare Funding

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Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen (D) on Tuesday said he expects CMS to formally approve a waiver for federal funding of TennCare "in the next week or two," the Knoxville News-Sentinelreports. State and federal officials have been working to reach acompromise on the waiver -- which expired in July, but has since beenextended five times -- for more than a year. One point of contentionwas a provision that would limit the amount of funding TennCare coulduse to reimburse hospitals for treating patients who cannot affordhealth care.

If the caps are approved, Tennessee would lose more than $300 million in federal funding annually (Collins, Knoxville News- Sentinel,9/26). If the compromise is approved, as expected, the cap onreimbursements would be more in line with what CMS has allowed forMassachusetts, which has a similar population size and number of peoplecovered under Medicaid, Bredesen said (Collins, Knoxville News-Sentinel,9/26). Bredesen declined to disclose the exact amount of federalfunding the state will receive, but he noted that "it's significant" (Knoxville News- Sentinel, 9/25).

Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. Youcan view the entire Kaiser DailyHealth Policy Report, search the archives, and sign up for email deliveryat kaisernetwork.org/email. The Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, afree service of The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.