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Florida’s Medicaid privatization plans moving forward

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Federal health officials say they expect to approve Florida's request to move Medicaid patients into private managed-care programs if the state resolves several issues to ensure the programs will be run with transparency and accountability.

The state has been negotiating with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for nearly two years. The Associated Press first reported the agreement Wednesday.

The state wants to shift about 3 million Medicaid patients into managed-care plans that allow for-profit providers to determine their care. The goal of the sweeping bills passed in 2011 was to save the state money on the $21 billion a year program while improving services.

Federal health officials want the state to meet regularly with insurers and patients and have an independent entity monitoring the program.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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