Bush Administration to Cut School Medicaid Payments

The Bush administration recently stated that school would no longer be able to use Medicaid to pay for certain costs associated with special education.

Thursday January 10th - 11:12am

The Bush administration recently set forth a new rule that would no longer allow schools to use Medicaid to pay for clerical tasks and transportation related to services for students with disabilities.

While Medicaid will still fund physical and occupational therapy, among other services that school are required to provide, it will not pay to take students off-site to receive those services. According to the new rule, Medicaid will also no longer pay for administrative tasks associated with such services, such as planning immunizations and medication administration.

This rule would save $3.6 billion over five years for the federal government, but the government would spend approximately $1.2 trillion on Medicaid in that same time frame. Lawmakers, concerned over the implications for schools and the meager savings, imposed a six-month moratorium on the rule.

Responding to the more than 1200 responses they received that were opposed to the new legislation, Medicaid officials stated that their concerns about schools misusing Medicaid funding for purposes "that are clearly educational" were supported.

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