Topping news in Mississippi this week:
• The University of Mississippi Medical Center will cut 280 jobs across the state because of a more than $32 million budget shortfall. UMMC expects to save around $24 million with a combination of the layoffs, reduced expenses and more revenue, but the medical center still needs another $8 million in savings or revenue to close the gap.
• Children’s Hospital of Alabama has stopped treating patients covered by Mississippi Medicaid. According to the hospital, Medicaid’s two coordinated care companies make late reimbursement or no reimbursement at all. Nearly 300 Mississippi children went to Children’s Hospital in Birmingham for treatment last year.
• Over at the Capitol, the Back the Badge Act, the Legislature’s answer to so called “blues lives matter” bills in other states, was approved and sent to the governor’s desk. The bill doubles the penalty for any crime against first responders, including nonviolent felonies and misdemeanors.