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Revised Budget Passes - Heads To Governor For His Signature – No Change To Dual Eligible Payments Yet

After the Conference Committee came to an agreement on a revised budget to address the differences between the original House and Senate versions, both chambers approved the new version this week and today sent it to the governor for his signature that is expected tomorrow.

The final version of the budget passed by the House and Senate contained much of Governor's Kasich's original proposal that addressed the state's $8 billion budget shortfall.  The bulk of the cuts offered to offset the state's shortfall were to healthcare, education and local governments.  In healthcare, nursing homes experienced the deepest cuts with hospitals and other providers seeing decreases as well.  Primary and secondary education experienced major cuts in funding and will be forced to rely more on local dollars (the impact on each district will vary across the state).  Finally, local governments will receive 25% less money from the state's Local Government Fund in the first year and another 25% less in the second year of the biennium.  The Governor and leadership in the House and Senate believe these cuts will allow the state's budget to stabilize without raising taxes.  

The budget language didn’t specifically address the Medicaid dual eligible provision for physician payments. Therefore, at the start of the state fiscal year, July 1, there should be no change in the manner in which ophthalmologists are paid by Medicaid for dual eligible patients. We anticipate changes to be considered this fall through the administrative rule process. This will include hearings and the ability to provide written and oral comments. The OOS and OSMA will be very active and engaged as rules are developed.

We will continue to provide updates as more information about the specifics of what might be changed is made available by the Ohio Medicaid office.