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W.Va. tops in per capita promotion of health law

By John Raby

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A campaign to promote public awareness of the new health care reform law is spending the most per capita in West Virginia.

Data compiled by The Associated Press from federal and state sources shows $17.1 million in outreach spending in West Virginia. That amounts to $9.23 per resident. The next-closest state is Arkansas at $8.28 per resident.

The $17.1 million spent in West Virginia on federal marketing and advertising grants ranks 11th among the states.

In May, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin announced West Virginia is extending Medicaid coverage to an estimated 91,500 uninsured low-income residents under the health care overhaul starting in January 2014.

Expanding Medicaid is expected to help the state's hospitals by providing coverage to thousands of residents now treated at hospitals without compensation as charity care.


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