TALLAHASSEE — The second week of the 2011 legislative session begins today with the House advancing a proposed sweeping overhaul of the state's Medicaid program — one of the major issues lawmakers will tackle this spring.
The House Health and Human Services Committee, chaired by Rep. Rob Schenck, R-Spring Hill, plans to devote three hours to a workshop on its plan to move Medicaid patients into managed care plans run by HMOs or doctor groups in an effort to stabilize the runaway costs of the program.
House Speaker Dean Cannon, R-Winter Park, said the proposal expands a five-county pilot project, and he encouraged all House members to read the proposal to familiarize themselves with the most significant health care measure to be considered this year.
The Medicaid workshop begins at 12:30 p.m. in Morris Hall in the House Office Building in the Capitol. The ranking Democrat on the 18-member committee is Rep. Mia Jones, D-Jacksonville.
Medicaid now costs Florida about $22 billion, as much as the state spends on all education programs.