- Associated Press - Thursday, December 15, 2016

PHOENIX (AP) - Arizona’s Medicaid program is increasing the rates paid to many providers to cover increased costs from a voter-approved boost in the minimum wage.

The payments will cover higher costs of providing long-term care for the elderly and disabled and services for the developmentally disabled. The cost for the first six months of 2017 is about $48 million. More than $11 million will come from the state, $3 million from counties and the rest the federal government.

Beth Kohler of the state’s Medicaid program said Thursday the state share will come from existing reserves but will need Legislative approval.

Providers and many lawmakers have been concerned that January’s increase to $10 an hour from the current $8.05 per hour will push some providers out of business.

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