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Enrollment in health program drops by 28 percent

The number of kids in an Arizona children’s health care program has fallen 28 percent since state officials decided no new children would be enrolled in the KidsCare program.

More than 33,000 children were enrolled as of May 1. There were about 47,000 children in the program before the cap was enacted.

The Legislature had approved elimination of the KidsCare program outright to help balance the state budget, but earlier this month Gov. Jan Brewer signed legislation that reversed those cuts.

That was after lawmakers learned that the federal health care overhaul requires the state to maintain health care eligibility to keep receiving Medicaid dollars.

The mandate didn’t prevent Arizona from keeping the enrollment freeze, however.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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