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Dudek Blasts Medicaid Rate Hike Requests

A state health care official has criticized a proposed rate increase by private health plans that cover Florida's poorest residents.

The Tampa Bay Timesreports that the plans, which work with Medicaid, say they need to raise rates by 12 percent to offset the rising cost of prescription drugs and an uptick in doctor's visits.

  Agency for Health Care Administration Secretary Elizabeth Dudek disagrees, writing in a letter to the plans Friday that some plans were paying hospitals more than is legally allowed.

Florida Association of Health Plans President Audrey Brown says the plans have been unexpectedly experiencing large losses since the state privatized Medicaid in 2014.

Deputy Secretary for Medicaid Justin Senior says the state has offered to increase rates by 6.4 percent and says conversations are ongoing. The new rate year starts Sept. 1.

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