A tax for managed care companies?

    Governor Rendell wants more insurers to help support Pennsylvania’s medical assistance program.

    A proposal to keep federal money flowing to Pennsylvania’s medical assistance program is built on a new tax for all managed care organizations.

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    State officials say the change could raise $400 million a year to help care for low-income families, seniors and people with disabilities. The new proposal from Governor Rendell is a 2 percent tax on the premiums paid to some health insurance companies.

    Right now Pennsylvania only taxes managed care organizations in the Medicaid program. State officials say the proposal levels the playing field, but insurance industry lobbyist Sam Marshall says the plan is unfair.

    Marshall: And of course the Medicaid MCOs put up the money and then got the money back, plus the federal money. Here insurers and those who buy health insurance would be putting the money up but obviously not getting the money back.

    If the general assembly agrees to the new proposal, more than 20 companies could be subject to the new tax.

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