SC Medicaid program’s $22M bailout approved

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina’s financial oversight board has approved another bailout for the state’s Medicaid program.

The Budget and Control Board on Tuesday unanimously agreed to cover the Department of Health and Human Services’ $22 million deficit.

State surpluses and reserves will cover the shortfall. It was the final chunk of a $228 million deficit announced months ago. The board had previously allowed the rest of the shortfall to be covered through surpluses and reserves.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Hugh Leatherman of Florence blames the Legislature for the deficit. Leatherman says lawmakers failed to give the agency enough flexibility to deal with payments to doctors and hospitals.

Agency director Tony Keck told the panel there will be no deficit in the budget year beginning July 1.

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