Hearing Set on Dispute Over Unpaid Illinois Medicaid Bills

A federal judge in Chicago is scheduled to consider a request by lawyers for Medicaid recipients that she order Illinois to start paying $1 billion a month for four months even as it enters a third year without a budget. 

Wednesday's hearing is in a civil case focused on more than $2 billion in unpaid Medicaid bills. A plaintiffs' filing Tuesday says court-ordered talks aimed at ensuring care for the poor and other vulnerable groups have stalled. 

Judge Joan Lefkow ruled June 7 that Illinois wasn't in compliance with previous orders and told the sides find a solution. 

Plaintiff attorney John Bouman says federal funds would reimburse half the $1 billion. But he conceded other state programs will have to face cuts even if Illinois covers the $500 million.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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