JULY 7, 2006 - Posted at 8:14 a.m. CDT
LITTLE ROCK, AR - Federal officials have reimbursed Arkansas for more than half the $6.4 million it spent as the Medicare drug benefit was launched. The state covered payments for patients who had trouble with the new system.
The state Department of Health and Human Services says an initial payment of $3.9 million arrived last week and that more money is on the way.
Through March 17, Arkansas covered the costs of drugs for 23,879 people whose prescriptions were denied by the Medicare program because their coverage was switching over from the Medicaid program.
About 60,000 Arkansans had been getting their drugs through Medicaid, but were eligible for Medicare under the new program.