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Edwards to issue emergency Medicaid deals

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BATON ROUGE — Gov. John Bel Edwards intends to sidestep lawmakers to enact $15.4 billion in Medicaid managed-care deals using an emergency contracting process, after House Republicans voted twice to block deals to provide services to 1.5 million people.

The Democratic governor started the process Monday evening for entering into 23-month emergency contracts that will keep five managed-care companies overseeing services for 90 percent of Louisiana’s Medicaid patients.

The current managed-care contracts, negotiated by former Gov. Bobby Jindal’s administration, expire Jan. 31. House Republicans on the Legislature’s joint budget committee have refused to approve contract extensions across multiple hearings, raising concerns about

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