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MN Official Says Medicaid Switch Won’t Be Quick

Minnesota State CapitolST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – A state official says the Medicaid health care expansion that Democratic Gov.-elect Mark Dayton wants won’t be quick.

Medicaid director Brian Osberg told a legislative panel Tuesday that the state Human Services Department and counties won’t be ready to fully implement the change until Oct. 1.

Osberg says it will take nine months to prepare computer systems, train county human services staff and make other preparations.

Dayton has promised to order the expansion one of his first official acts next month after departing Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty declined to do so.

Minnesota is one of the states allowed to get federal aid under the health care overhaul to pay for more generous coverage for childless adults.

Dayton is also expected to name a commissioner for the Human Services Department.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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