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Community Healthcare Clinic girds for influx of former Medicaid patients

Wed, 13 Jun 2012 18:00:06 CDT
By: Charlie Schlenker

The director of the Community Health Care Clinic in Bloomington-Normal says they are bracing for an influx of new patients as the state prepares to cut people from Medicaid rolls. Angie McGlaughlin says they are already reaching out to current medical providers that may be treating people about to be dropped because of state budget cuts. The clinic already has 3,000 patients per year and McGlaughlin says they will triage those removed from Medicaid, giving preference to those who have chronic conditions.

"My biggest fear is that if we don't catch them now, they're going to go without care for months or years and they're going to come to us down the road and their diseases have progressed where there is now more significant complications."

Statewide, the number of patients cut from Medicaid is 27,000. McGlaughlin says there is not yet data available from the state on how many Bloomington-Normal Medicaid patients are being dropped, even though the deadline is about two weeks away.

"We sent a communication out to current medical providers that may have these families in their offices who will lose coverage: Chestnut Family Clinic ,Advocate BroMenn Family Clinic, the OSF Social Work department, Advocate Social Work, so the ones who are actually caring for those patients can get that notification."

She says patients in other areas of the state not served by community clinics may not have ready access to care. Area hospitals say they expect to increase the amount of unreimbursed care they donate. But, they say the Medicaid funding hit is substantially offset by an increase in federal bed tax distributions.


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