The state of Wyoming has paid millions to hospitals around the state in recent months to help cover the cost of treating uninsured patients.
The Wyoming Department of Health has approved paying $1.3 million to 18 hospitals since the program started in July. Another $700,000 is available under the program through next June.
The Wyoming State Auditor’s Office has been handing out more money through a parallel, $1-million program that targets small hospitals in the state that have experienced low cash reserves.
Wyoming lawmakers created the hospital subsidy program earlier this year. Lawmakers rejected Gov. Matt Mead’s call to accept federal funds to expand the Medicaid program to offer health insurance to more than 17,000 people. Expanding Medicaid is an element of the federal Affordable Care Act.