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US Official Fails To Convince Gov. Corbett To Expand Medicaid Eligibility

(Pennsylvania governor Tom Corbett.  File photo by Patrick Smith/ Getty Images)

(Pennsylvania governor Tom Corbett. File photo by Patrick Smith/ Getty Images)

(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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CBS Philly (con't)

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By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — Governor Tom Corbett’s meeting with a top Obama administration official has not resulted in a change of heart for the governor when it comes to his position on expanding Medicaid eligibility in Pennsylvania.

Corbett spokeswoman Christine Cronkright says the governor and US Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius had a “meaningful discussion” in Washington on Tuesday evening.  But Cronkright says Corbett remains opposed to expanding Medicaid eligibility without knowing if significant reforms to the program are possible:

“For example, the ability to better align benefit packages here in Pennsylvania to the needs of individual citizens.  They did discuss looking at using the private insurance market to expand coverage in Pennsylvania, similar to what Arkansas and Tennessee have been pursuing.”

But Cronkright says the governor will now wait for additional information from HHS based on Tuesday night’s discussion, and isn’t making any further decisions about expanding Medicaid at this time.  Corbett has said he is concerned about the long-term cost.

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