Rauner signs laws aimed at nursing-home Medicaid backlog

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Gov. Bruce Rauner has signed laws designed to cut back on a growing and costly backlog in determining Medicaid eligibility for nursing home residents.

The Republican signed legislation Thursday that allows banks to share financial information with the state about clients who need institutional care. He also signed a law eliminating the need for annual Medicaid re-determination in cases where financial circumstances have not changed.

This comes after a nursing home in Girard had to close because it was fronting the cost of $2 million worth of Medicaid. Other states refused to help Illinois with placing children in care out of state because of the state’s poor record of Medicaid payment.

The Associated Press obtained data compiled by Democratic state Comptroller Susana Mendoza and reported in June that there is a backlog of 15,000 people awaiting state officials’ determination of eligibility for the state-federal Medicaid health care plan. They’ve already moved to nursing homes so nursing homes have been fronting about $300 million in costs while waiting for the state.

The bills were SB2385 and SB2913 .