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NC could save millions on inmates’ care

Raleigh News & Observer, August 25, 2010

 

The state could save an estimated $11.5 million a year by requiring that hospitals and other health care providers bill Medicaid when prisoners are treated as inpatients, according to an audit released Tuesday. The report from state Auditor Beth Wood said North Carolina paid about $159 million for inmate health care in 2008 and 2009. Of that, about $26.5 million went to treat prisoners who were potentially eligible for Medicaid, a federal-state health care program for the needy and disabled. Wood's audit said that the Department of Correction could have saved $17.3 million on those services at Medicaid rates and that the federal government would have reimbursed the state an additional $5.9 million, bringing the two-year savings to roughly $23 million.