Medicaid Increase Defended

Laramie, WY – The director of Wyoming's Department of Health says the reason Wyoming Medicaid numbers are so high, has a lot to do with the numbers of people in poverty. The department is asking for over 200 million NEW dollars for Medicaid, and that number could go up in the future. Director Deb Fleming says Wyoming has some of the lowest eligibility numbers in the country, but the fact that so many people are eligible has a lot to do with low wages and the fact that people have moved to the program during Welfare Reform. Fleming adds that she thinks past Medicaid budgets may have been understated. But she wants to give legislators a much more accurate look at what the state really is facing with health care.