More GOP governors give Medicaid expansion another look

Published on January 13, 2014 at 1:46 PM · No Comments

Politico reports that while Republican governors in Texas and Louisiana remain firmly in the no camp, others in Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Indiana and Oklahoma are giving the program a second look. News outlets also offer updates from Florida, Pennsylvania, Kansas and Georgia.

Politico: GOP Governors May Still Go For Medicaid Expansion - And Cash
Republicans counting on a year of nonstop Obamacare-bashing may be in for an unwelcome surprise: more red-state governors ditching the political script to take a second look at the law's huge expansion of Medicaid. Governors like Rick Perry of Texas and Bobby Jindal of Louisiana remain firmly in the "no way" camp. But Pennsylvania and Tennessee are actively working with the Obama administration to expand Medicaid, although their efforts to squeeze policy concessions on the GOP wish list -; like requiring enrollees to pay more -; could be a dead end. Indiana and Oklahoma are eyeing alternative versions of expansion and were granted a one-year reprieve by the Obama administration to extend existing state health care programs while they think about it (Cheney and Millman, 1/10).

Miami Herald: Expanding Medicaid An Uphill Battle In Florida Capitol
Florida's 2013 legislative session practically started and ended with Medicaid expansion at the center of debate, with House Republicans blocking a plan to use federal dollars to reduce the number of uninsured Floridians. This year, House Republicans pledge to tackle issues that have long lingered on the back burner, such as more independence for highly trained nurses, increasing the number of medical students who go into primary care and regulating virtual doctor visits. But even as the focus shifts from Medicaid expansion, Democrats say it remains a top priority (Mitchell, 1/12).

Philadelphia Inquirer: Questions Persist About Corbett's Health-Care Plan
Depending upon whom you listen to, Healthy Pennsylvania, Gov. Corbett's plan to reform and expand the Medicaid program is a disappointing flip-flop; a good plan in need of tweaking; a bureaucratic nightmare; or all of the above. Those were some of the opinions voiced at a public hearing - one of six statewide - held a little over a week ago at the National Constitution Center on the administration's plan to extend health insurance to as many as 500,000 commonwealth residents (Calandra, 1/12).

Kansas Health Institute: Hospital Officials Say Refusal To Expand Medicaid Will Hurt Their Bottom Lines
For Jodi Schmidt and other hospital administrators across Kansas, Medicaid expansion is a critical business issue not a political one. Schmidt is chief executive of Labette Health, a 99-bed regional medical center that serves Parsons and several surrounding communities in southeast Kansas. She said the money being lost because of the decision by Gov. Sam Brownback and legislators to not participate in the first year of expansion could mean the difference between the hospital finishing the year in the black or with a deficit (McLean, 1/13).

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