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Ta-da! Explaining The Low Income Pool With A Magic Trick

Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

Florida officials debuted a new proposal Wednesday to try and keep a $2.2 billion dollar health fund for the uninsured. The fund is coming with significant changes. But first, a quick magic trick to demonstrate how LIP works.

Florida takes 40 cents, waves a magic federal wand over, and ta-da: We now have a shiny $1 bill.

But here’s the rub: the federal government doesn’t like that magic trick. They want LIP to be more transparent and less magical. They also want to make sure that hospital A doesn’t get a big ol’ chunk of that dollar just because it ponied up the 40 cents.

Under the new LIP proposal, more money would go to rural hospitals, teaching hospitals, trauma hospitals and safety net hospitals.

Oh, and to incentivize good doctoring, hospitals that meet specific quality measure would also get more money. Here’s Justin Senior with the state’s health care administration.

“The model we are using is a model developed by the Florida Senate and by the staff in the Florida Senate and does I think address a lot of concerns the federal government had.”

LIP is just one piece of a Tallahassee disaster that ended early this week, without a budget. Fixing that, though, may require a whole new level of sorcery.

Health News Florida reporter Abe Aboraya works for WMFE in Orlando. He started writing for newspapers in high school. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe worked as a reporter for the Orlando Business Journal. He comes from a family of health care workers.