Per capita spending on Medicaid beneficiaries varied widely across the country in fiscal 2008, according to an analysis by the Government Accountability Office.
In eight states, including New York, beneficiaries cost an average of at least $10,500. In contrast, in six states including California and Illinois, the per-enrollee cost was less than $6,000. The cost in 35 states and the District of Columbia fell between those two groups. Because of faulty data, Massachusetts was not included in the calculations.
California's program was the most frugal, spending roughly $3,800 per Medicaid enrollee. At the other end of the spectrum was Rhode Island, which spent $11,700. But the GAO noted that because of imperfect data, the numbers should be viewed with caution.
The analysis was requested by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.). Growing out of his opposition to the Medicaid expansion under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Hatch called for additional scrutiny of the spending discrepancies.