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Lawmaker wants tax breaks for health care workers


CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – A state lawmaker is pushing legislation that would provide health care workers tax breaks as an incentive for them to see more Medicaid recipients.

State Sen. Jason Crowell, R-Cape Girardeau, said the bill would allow doctors, nurses and dentists to deduct Medicaid payments from their taxable income.

The Cape Girardeau Republican said such a move would make up some of the gap between how much the taxpayer-funded program reimburses for health care and how much that care actually costs.

The generally low payments have led many health care providers to avoid treating Medicaid patients, creating a bottleneck for those patients to find care.

In the fiscal year that ended June 30, Medicaid payments to health care providers was $206.7 million.

Crowell estimates his bill would provide tax savings to those providers of about $12.4 million.