A preliminary analysis of the federal health reform package wending through Congress has a new price tag for Florida's budget: A maximum $1 billion in 2015 when an additional 1.7 million people would be added to the Medicaid rolls under a House bill. That's according to the Agency for Health Care Administration was presented a side-by-side analysis of the bills in the House and Senate.
The extra cost represents the state share of the cost of expanding Medicaid eligibility. While liberal health groups haven't had a chance to examine the numbers, they're likely to dismiss them as 1) fear mongering or 2) a worthwhile expense to cover more people, improve health care and thereby lower overall costs (such as at emergency rooms) by having a healthier populace.
The numbers are subject to change as Congress changes its bills.