KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations.

Illinois Gov. Quinn Signs Medicaid Expansion Into Law

News outlets report on other developments related to state decisions about whether to expand the federal-state program for the poor in Idaho, West Virginia and California.

The Associated Press: Gov. Quinn Signs Medicaid Expansion Into Law
Illinois became the latest state Monday to implement a central part of President Barack Obama's health care law by expanding Medicaid to cover low-income adults who don't have children at home. Gov. Pat Quinn signed the state legislation into law, which will allow an estimated 342,000 Illinois residents to enroll by 2017 (Tareen, 7/22).

Chicago Tribune: Medicaid Coverage To Expand In Illinois
About 342,000 low-income Illinoisans will be newly eligible for government-sponsored health insurance through Medicaid starting in January as part of legislation signed into law Monday by Gov. Pat Quinn. The expansion of the state-administered Medicaid program, one of the central components of President Barack Obama's 2010 health care overhaul law, will be financed fully by the federal government for the first three years, then gradually decline to 90 percent by 2020 (Frost and Pearson, 7/23).

The Associated Press: H&W Prepares For Medicaid Expansion – Just In Case
Idaho has so far balked at expanding Medicaid coverage for more low-income residents, part of President Barack Obama's insurance overhaul left optional for states by the U.S. Supreme Court. But the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare doesn't want to get caught flat-footed, just in case lawmakers and Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter decide otherwise (Miller, 7/22).

The Associated Press: Some W.Va. Lawmakers Wary Of Expanding Medicaid
Several members of a House-Senate oversight committee questioned West Virginia's decision to expand Medicaid under the federal health care overhaul on Monday, after fielding details from the financial analysis that helped prompt Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to choose that course in May. Conducted by CCRC Actuaries with the help of specialists, the study estimates that 91,500 low-income West Virginia would gain coverage starting next year, by increasing the income threshold for enrolling in Medicaid (Messina, 7/22).

California Healthline: New Campaign For Medi-Cal Enrollment
The enrollment-assistance plan, called CaliforniaHealth+, is a major effort of the California Primary Care Association. It directs people to newly established help desks at community health centers across the state. It's designed to publicize the benefits of Medi-Cal expansion for the estimated 3.9 million Californians who are either newly eligible or are currently eligible but not enrolled. In addition, the centers will direct eligible people to the state's health benefit exchange, Covered California. But the main focus of the CaliforniaHealth+ campaign is the Medi-Cal expansion population, according to Carmela Castellano-Garcia, president and CEO of CPCA (Gorn, 7/22).

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