Rise In Healthcare Costs Drives New Look At Alternatives

Rise In Healthcare Costs Drives New Look At Alternatives

Florida lawmakers are bracing for budget holes despite figures showing the state could end up with another year of surplus. The cost driver: healthcare.

Healthcare concerns, more specifically cost problems—are starting to take over conversations at the capital.

Listen Listening…

Health costs aren’t staying in their box, as evidenced by a Wednesday committee looking at the office of vocational rehab, which helps disabled Floridians find jobs:

“We’re spending money for surgical services, and medical diagnostic services, medical testing, just so you know, just so you know, that’s in the education budget,” said Sen. Don Gaetz, R-Niceville.

Despite its purpose as a jobs agency Vocational Rehab is spending most of its money on healthcare services. The director says that’s mostly due to mental health services because people who are uninsured have turned to her agency for help.

And for the past several months, state budget officials have been talking about the growing costs of the state’s Medicaid program. Lawmakers privatized it a few years ago hoping to save money, but costs are starting to get larger as more people enter the system.

“Increased life expectancy and longevity, the second is the aging population increasing demand for services, the third is technological change in medicine and the forth is prescription drug costs overall,” state economist Amy Baker told the Senate Appropriations Committee Thursday…

Read full story at Health News Florida

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