Many Welfare Cases Still Unresolved

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A new report says that nearly a thousand calls for urgent state welfare or Medicaid benefits remain unresolved following problems with Colorado's new computer system.

The computer system has been blamed for causing a backlog of nearly 30,000 people waiting to find out if they can receive benefits. District Judge John Coughlin ordered the state to reduce its backlog by 40 percent and open a phone bank to help people with emergencies within five days.

Coughlin originally set a deadline of today for the state to reduce its backlog and provide proof. He has agreed to give the state until March seventh to provide its report.

Rhonda Bentz is a spokeswoman for the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing. She says some cases have taken a while to resolve because the state has to track down information with the applicant or with the county where they live.

The $200 million Colorado Benefits Management System went online on September first even though county workers had complained of glitches.