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NC Medicaid $181 Million Under Budget


North Carolina’s Medicaid program is continuing a recent trend of meeting its budget or coming in under. The state health department is telling lawmakers this week the program was $181 million under budget as of December.

North Carolina used to be so bad at budgeting for Medicaid that one state lawmaker called it the budget Pac-Man that eats up all the dollars. From 2010 through 2013, lawmakers dealt with nearly $2 billion worth of cost overruns.

Since then, Governor Pat McCrory’s administration has turned it around with the help of a consulting firm. Cost overruns have not been a problem the last two years, and now, Medicaid is $181 million under budget.

Health officials say the most recent improvement is due to flat enrollment and lower costs among current Medicaid patients.

Health leaders will also update lawmakers this week on the plan to overhaul the program. State lawmakers reached a deal in September to give insurance companies and groups of doctors and hospitals more responsibility for managing care and hitting budget targets. 

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