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Lack of federal funds may delay Medicaid payments to OK hospitals

OK (KSWO)- Hospitals in Oklahoma are preparing for the possibility that they will not receive Medicaid payment next June due to a lack of federal funds.

The Oklahoma Healthcare Authority estimates it is $35-million short for the upcoming fiscal year, and, despite a slight increase in state budget appropriations, the decrease in federal funds means the agency man have to delay June 2018 payments until the next month.

The legislative chair for the Oklahoma Academy of Family Physicians says this could hurt rural hospitals the most.

"For those clinics, particularly many of those in the rural areas, they could say we won't see patients this month,” said Dr. Steven Crawford.

The Oklahoma Health Care Authority says in order to make up for the loss of federal funds, they would need a $69-million increase from the state. The authority's board will vote on a final budget for next fiscal year next week.

Copyright 2017 KSWO. All rights reserved. 

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