St. Louis Public Radio News
3:04 pm
Thu August 21, 2003

Illinois is Catching Up on Medicaid Reimbursements

Springfield, ILL. – The state of Illinois is doing a better job of paying its bills. Reimbursements to pharmacies, nursing homes, hospitals, and other businesses that accept Medicaid patients are being paid about 17 days after reaching Comptroller Dan Hynes' office.

Earlier this year, it was taking 50 days to write the checks.

Part of the reason for the improvement is that Hynes' office says it made Medicaid bills a top priority whenever new state money became available.

The state reimburses pharmacies, hospitals, nursing homes and other businesses that accept Medicaid patients.

The backlog currently totals about $180 million, down from at least $800 million at the most critical point.

Hynes says he has paid all the Medicaid bills from the last budget year and nearly $500 million in bills under the current budget.