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David Mittleman
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Michigan Sued for Cutting Off Medicaid Dental Benefits to Poor and Disabled

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Along with other devastating cuts, Governor Granholm has been forced to cut Medicaid dental benefits for low-income and disabled adults. However, a lawsuit was recently filed on behalf of 400,000 adult Medicaid recipients who are affected by the cut.

With an already extremely strained budget, Governor Granholm proposed a tax on doctors to restore some Medicaid funding. However, the state Senate vehemently rejected the idea. As a result, there was no funding available to provide the vitally important Medicaid dental coverage.

The lawsuit was spurred by the recent death of a developmentally disabled Alpena County woman covered by Medicaid, who died last week after an infection in her mouth went untreated. The suit contends that the State of Michigan is legally bound to provide dental coverage to low-income and disabled adults because it failed to notify the federal government of the change in policy. Granholm issued the executive order in May that eliminated funding for adult dental coverage effective July 1.