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Obama administration raises concerns about Medicaid expansion plan, will work with state


HELENA, Montana — The Obama administration says it has concerns about provisions in Montana's new law to expand Medicaid, but it is willing to work with the state to overcome them.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services spokesman Ben Wakana said in a statement Friday that as the administration considers Montana's proposal, the priority will be to make sure coverage is affordable and accessible. He says another priority will be ensuring the plan does not impose significant premiums on people with very low incomes.

Gov. Steve Bullock signed the Medicaid expansion bill into law Wednesday.

It would require people who enroll to pay health care premiums and copays. Enrollees also would be asked to participate in a workplace assessment survey. Because of those stipulations, the state must seek a waiver from the federal government to put the program in place.

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