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Tue Oct 3, 2017, 11:40 AM

House Republicans seek $1 billion in Medicaid funds for Puerto Rico

Source: Reuters

#POLITICS OCTOBER 3, 2017 / 11:34 AM / UPDATED 5 MINUTES AGO

House Republicans seek $1 billion in Medicaid funds for Puerto Rico

Reuters Staff

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Puerto Rico, struggling to recover from hurricane damage, could receive $1 billion in additional funding for the Medicaid health insurance program for the poor under a proposal from a U.S. House of Representatives panel, a congressional aide said on Tuesday.

Republicans who lead the House Energy and Commerce Committee included the request for more Medicaid funding for Puerto Rico as part of a separate bill to reauthorize the Children’s Health Insurance Program. It is scheduled to be considered and voted on in committee on Wednesday.

The U.S. territorial island, hard-hit by Hurricane Maria, already had faced a drop-off of Medicaid funding at the end of the year, according to the Washington Post, which first reported Republicans’ plan.

Now Puerto Rico also faces massive damage from Maria that wiped out much of its infrastructure, left hospitals struggling and residents without clean water, electricity and cellphone service.

Committee spokeswoman Jennifer Sherman said the panel would take up the bill on Wednesday as part of its effort to renew funding for the larger U.S. children’s insurance program, which saw its funding expire during the weekend.

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Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-puertorico-congress/house-republicans-seek-1-billion-in-medicaid-funds-for-puerto-rico-idUSKCN1C81XK

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