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HealthChoices Northeast Delayed
March 12, 2003

As was indicated in Governor Rendell's proposed 2003-04 budget, the Northeast Zone implementation of HealthChoices is expected to be delayed. This delay is a result of the Governor's intent to review the HealthChoices program as part of his overall healthcare reform initiative and in response to the current budget situation.

As a result of this expected delay the Northeast Zone which includes Carbon, Lackawanna, Luzerne, Monroe, Pike, Schuylkill, Susquehanna, Wayne, and Wyoming counties, the behavioral health implementation would not start on January 1, 2004. All future zones of HealthChoices would be delayed as well.

Technically, this delay won't be final until the 2003-04 budget is passed; however it is not expected that this delay would be eliminated in any final budget. All areas of the state that are currently operating HealthChoices will be maintained. This delay does not impact the Southeast, Southwest and Lehigh/Capital Zones.

For more information, contact Rebecca May Cole for more information.

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