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Federal Government Concerned over Pennsylvania's Dropping Medicaid Rolls

The federal government is asking why Pennsylvania's Medicaid rolls have dropped over the past year, and is suggesting that some people might have been kicked off improperly. Carey Miller, spokeswoman for the PA Department of Public Welfare (DPW), said the belief is that the department is in compliance with the federal rules in regards to the redetermination of clients enrolled in the Medicaid program.

"We do not believe that there have been any terminations in error, but will continue to review and fix any errors that we are made aware of," said Miller.

The federal government sent a letter last month to the DPW, but the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said it has yet to get a response. The letter states that a Philadelphia assistance office had a serious backlog of documents and, as a result, it may have been improper to kick anyone off Medicaid for lack of eligibility information. Miller wouldn't respond to that particular allegation. She said the department regularly confers with federal officials about mandated programs such as Medicaid.

"The federal government wants to make sure the way the program is being run by the states is done so in a way that it's meant to be done," she said, "so they will check in with us, they may have questions about something, there may have been a trigger that came to mind and they needed to just check in with us."

Miller said any Pennsylvania citizen who believes that he or she was wrongly taken off the Medicaid rolls can submit an application, or appeal, for the benefit at any time.