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State error sends 12,000 Medicare-ineligibility letters

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About 12,000 people in Michigan received letters erroneously stating they would no longer receive state assistance to pay certain Medicare costs.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human services said in a statement Thursday a "technical system error" mistakenly listed thousands of seniors and people with disabilities as being ineligible for the assistance, prompting ineligibility letters.

Department Deputy Director Chris Priest says they're working to correct the error so people can receive benefits.

The state helps people who meet the income requirement pay Medicare premiums, deductibles and co-pays.

Spokesman Bob Wheaton says that cost would have amounted to about $150 a month for each of those 12,000 people who received the letter.

Wheaton says the federal government pays about two-thirds of that cost.

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