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Mississippi Medicaid program at risk
By Axel Spaeh
Jackson, Mississippi: Funding for Mississippi's Medicaid program is currently set to end on July 1st. The Mississippi State Legislature adjourned in April without authorizing further funding for the program due to disagreement between the Democratic and Republican members about accepting the Medicaid provision of Obamacare.
As the legislature has already adjourned, Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant would need to call the legislature back for a special session concerning a budget for the Medicaid program. However, due to the fierceness of the disagreement, Bryant has stated that he may skip calling a special session and continue running the program via executive order. The Democratic legislators do not believe that doing so is within the Governor's authority and are continuing to push for the expansion to the Medicaid program.
Meanwhile, stakeholders are becoming increasingly concerned. Vanessa Phipps Henderson, executive director of the Mississippi Healthcare Association told the press, "We continue encouraging Mississippi legislators to come to an agreement quickly to fund the existing Medicaid program beyond June 30, so it does not cause any disruption in services."