Tribpedia: Medicaid

Tribpedia

MEDICAID
Medicaid is the safety net health insurance provider for children, the disabled and the very poor. It is jointly funded by the federal government and the state, which administers the program with oversight from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

Both Medicaid and Medicare — the federally ...

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Best-Laid Plans

Texas Weekly

It's hard to believe the governor saw this coming. When Rick Perry decided to replace the a board on the eve of a hearing about the evidence that sent a Texas man to the executioner, he couldn't have been thinking the story would grow legs and stomp all around his bid for reelection.

Perry shakes hands after a speech in the Texas House.
Perry shakes hands after a speech in the Texas House.

EMTs and Nurses Could Be Cut Out of Telemedicine

Emergency medical technicians and entry-level nurses could be cut out of the telemedicine equation under a proposal the Texas Medical Board is considering. The change would prohibit anyone but doctors, physicians' assistants and advanced practice nurses from presenting patients for care via long-distance videoconferencing – a move rural hospitals and prison doctors adamantly oppose.

Changing the Odds

Texas Weekly

Signing anti-tax pledges — as both of the leading Republican candidates for governor have now done — warms the hearts of gambling promoters. Not because Rick Perry and Kay Bailey Hutchison suddenly become proponents of casino gambling, but because gambling often gets stuck in a threesome with program cuts and tax increases and that setup is what made it legal to bet on bingo, horses, dogs, and the lottery in Texas.

Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the uninsured. Report: The Crunch Continues: Medicaid spending, coverage and policy in the midst of a recession. Results from a 50-state Medicaid budget survey for state fiscal years 2009 and 2010.
Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the uninsured. Report: The Crunch Continues: Medicaid spending, coverage and policy in the midst of a recession. Results from a 50-state Medicaid budget survey for state fiscal years 2009 and 2010.

States struggling to fund Medicaid

States are struggling mightily to fund Medicaid services in one the deepest recessions in recent history, according to a 50-state health care study released by the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured. States, many of them strapped by budget shortfalls, overwhelmingly reported being saved by the federal stimulus package, and said without it, they would have been forced to make serious cuts in Medicaid eligibility.

Perry shakes hands after a speech in the Texas House.
Perry shakes hands after a speech in the Texas House.

State technology chief resigns

The executive director of the state's data and information technology agency stepped down last month. Brian Rawson, who spent the last three years overseeing the state's data consolidation and telecommunications efforts for the Department of Information Resources, will run "statewide data initiatives" for the Texas Education Agency.

Just Another Day at the Office

Texas Weekly

Remember the cartoons where the sheepdog and the coyote would meet at the time clock every morning, say hello, ask about the families, punch in, harass each other all day, then greet each other pleasantly as they punched out for the evening?

Crunch Time

Texas Weekly

You get the feeling that this legislative session is just like the last one, run in reverse. Instead of starting with a whimper and closing with a bang, it started with a bang. It shows no signs of ending with one.

Spending Theirs, Saving Ours

Texas Weekly

The Texas Senate approved a $182.2 billion budget that includes over $10 billion in federal stimulus money, avoids across-the-board cuts in state agencies, and leaves the state's $9.1 billion Rainy Day Fund untouched.

March Madness

Texas Weekly

Our bracket says Pitt will win the NCAA men's basketball championship. That doesn't mean it'll happen. And if it does happen, we won't be able to claim (honestly, anyway) that we knew it was gonna happen. We'll just have guessed right. [eds. note: After this was written, Pitt lost to Villanova, failed to make the Final Four, ruined our bracket, and painfully proved our point about predicting the future.]

One Decade at a Time

Texas Weekly

That noise you hear in the Senate and the House isn't just partisan barking — it's the early signal that, in two years, those lawmakers will be drawing political maps and spilling political blood.

Now It Starts

Texas Weekly

The new speaker's first bit of danger is out of the way, with House members on their way home for a long weekend to mull their committee assignments and to consider the difference between what they hoped for and what they got.

The Order of Things

Texas Weekly

The conversation in the halls is mostly about House committee assignments and who'll get what. The underlying political tension is between Democrats who think Speaker Joe Straus should reward them for making up 80 percent of the vote that put him in the corner office, and Republicans who think he needs to consolidate power within his own party in the closely divided chamber to have any chance of hanging on to the controls.

Waiting

Texas Weekly

The House has its rules in place after a long day of warbling and negotiating, and the one that sticks out is the rule that lets the House depose a speaker with only 76 votes — a simple majority. The speaker no longer has the power to ignore privileged motions, including motions to "vacate the chair." And an effort to raise the bar — to require 90 votes, or 100, to unseat a speaker fell short. It's 76: If it were a rear-view mirror on the Speaker's dais, it'd have words on it: "Warning! Hostile representatives in mirror are closer than they appear."

Starting to Start

Texas Weekly

Week three. Speaker race, over. House, kumbayahed. Two-thirds rule, guarded condition. Senate, patching things up. Revenue estimate, ouch. Base budget, tight. President, sworn in, twice.

Money and Time

Texas Weekly

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, raised $1.7 million during the three months ending June 30 and got to the mid-year mark with $9.3 million in the campaign account.

Surprised?

Texas Weekly

By now, Texas businesses were supposed to have already filed returns and written checks for the newish business margins tax. They got a one-month reprieve from Comptroller Susan Combs, who decided the level of confusion was high enough to give everyone another month to calculate and pay up.

Gusher!

Texas Weekly

While other states are facing deficits large and small, the Texas Legislature will start its next session with a surplus of almost $15 billion, according to House Speaker Tom Craddick.

The Other Season to Greet

Texas Weekly

You think they decorate the malls too early? Here's our version: There are only 90 money-raising, commercial-running, attack-mailing, town hall-squabbling, sign-stealing, robo-calling, finger-pointing, voter-abusing days left until the Texas primary elections.

Who Done It?

Texas Weekly

Six Fort Worth Republicans are asking for an investigation of automated phone calls they say might have swung the results of a special election earlier this month.

A Very Expensive Footnote

Texas Weekly

Democrat Mikal Watts — having spent $947,505 "exploring" a run for the U.S. Senate — decided not to run after all. That removes one serious opponent for U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, but the Texas Republican will still face opposition a year from now — probably state Rep. Rick Noriega, D-Houston.

England's New Flag

Texas Weekly

Rep. Kirk England of Grand Prairie is switching parties, saying he'll seek reelection as a Democrat. There hasn't been a party switch in the Texas Legislature in a decade, and it's been a long, long time since a legislator left the Republicans for the Democrats and survived the switch.

The Speaker Thing

Texas Weekly

Start with a follow-up to last week's story about the powers of the House Speaker, and the attempts to get Attorney General Greg Abbott to referee. The issue is now in the hands of the lawyers, mostly, and that means there is a large stack of briefs to go through.

Survivor: Austin

Texas Weekly

House Speaker Tom Craddick had the tenacity to withstand a three-day siege at the end of the legislative session, but it cost him some of his own supporters in the House. The question now is whether the next elections will replace enough of the rebels for him to hold on for a fourth term.

Catch and Release

Texas Weekly

Corrections to a tax bill could save thousands of small businesses in Texas from the gross receipts tax approved by lawmakers a year ago. Lawmakers might raise the minimum revenue requirements, letting more companies escape the new levy.