New AL Medicaid bill reveals regional map - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

New AL Medicaid bill reveals regional map

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(WTVM) -

The state of Alabama unveiled new districts under which the health care system will operate. Under this plan, the state will be divided into five regions with regional health care organizations coordinating services for Medicaid patients.

The system will not keep patients from seeing doctors outside their region.

A study revealed what the state of Alabama stood to lose by not expanding the Medicaid program under Obamacare.

The 14 states that have refused to expand Medicaid under the federal healthcare law could lose $8.4 billion in federal money. 

The study was conducted by the non-partisan Rand Corporation. 

Jim Carnes with Arise Alabama says this is more proof that Alabama must open the program to the 300,000 or so without coverage, especially as Alabama taxpayers continue to send money to Washington.

"As we watch these other states get on board with Medicaid expansion and these other folks gain coverage and gain that health security, we're helping to pay for that in other states," says Carnes. 

Gov. Robert Bentley will sign into law Medicaid reform today that's billed as a possible first step to expand Medicaid in the future.

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