A top aide to Gov. Tom Corbett says expanding Medicaid eligibility in Pennsylvania under a sweeping federal health care law probably wouldn't take effect until January 2015, even if the governor embraces the idea.
Beverly Mackereth, Corbett's top public welfare official, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Friday that the administration would need time to negotiate with the federal government and create the program.
The federal law promises 100-percent funding to expand Medicaid eligibility beginning January 1, 2014, a year before Mackereth says Pennsylvania would be ready. Democratic lawmakers say they'll keep pushing Corbett to expand Medicaid next year.
Corbett is opposing a Medicaid expansion out of concern over the cost to Pennsylvania taxpayers. Still, Mackereth says Corbett aides are drafting several models of a program to expand Medicaid eligibility.
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