Democratic Women Press for Medicaid Expansion

December 18, 2013 9:30 am

by Jon Richards · 4 comments

At 11:00 this morning, the Georgia Federation of Democratic Women will hold a press conference at the Capitol in support of expanding Medicaid in the Peach State. A press release from the Cobb Democratic Women says,

Governor Deal has claimed that it is too expensive to expand Medicaid. However, the expansion of Medicaid comes at a very minimal cost to Georgia–it is fully funded by the Federal Government the first year, and then 90% covered by the Federal Government for the next 10 years.

Despite the pressure, the Governor is unlikely to yield. A recent post on his Facebook page said,

Gov. Deal remains opposed to expanding Medicaid. “Georgia cannot afford billions in spending over the next 10 years,” Deal said. “We are a state that balances our budget and one of the few states to have a growing rainy day fund. We must continue practicing common sense fiscal responsibility.”

Speaking to the Gwinnett GOP at a recent breakfast, Governor Deal was asked about the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid expansion. While he acknowledged the federal government’s promise to pay most of the costs, he also noted that this promise came from the same people who said, “If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep it.”

As National Review’s Jim Geraghty says, All of President Obama’s promises come with an expiration date.

peachpundit (@peachpundit) December 18, 2013 at 9:30 am

New post: Democratic Women Press for Medicaid Expansion http://t.co/rbfWeg5NEw #gapol

DavidTC December 18, 2013 at 6:01 pm

The joke here is that, as rural hospitals close due to lack of federal subsidies keeping them afloat (As it was presumed that almost everyone would have insurance, until the insane and completely nonsensical Supreme Court decided that, somehow, states were able to just make up what level of Medicaid funding they got), Georgia will _have to_ expand Medicaid…

…probably right as the three year 100% window expires and so we hilarious pay 10%, exactly as much as we would have paid at that point if we’d just signed up to start with, but without three years of no payments.

Look, the Federal programs to cover the costs of the uninsured are _going away_. They were planned to go away, that’s part of how the ACA was paid for, and the Democrats aren’t going to go ‘Oh, so sorry you didn’t take the free money we were offering in the new form we were offering it, but hey, we’ll pass a law letting you keep the old stupid form’.

And as such, either Georgia will be on the hook for either the entire cost of the uninsured (Which it can’t afford), _or_ various hospitals here will go bankrupt, and Republicans will be _forced_ to accept the Medicaid expansion, and look like complete morons when they do.

Incidentally, even if the costs started out at 90%, it would _still save us money_. Because right now state and local funding is helping cover the uninsured. Not all of it, usually not even 10% of it, but considering that vastly more expensive way that the uninsured use health services, paying 10% towards someone health insurance is vastly cheaper than paying 5% of services they incur while uninsured.

This is, incidentally, why the Supreme Court was completely wrong. The ACA Medicaid expansion wasn’t some independent thing that held a gun to state’s head. What actually happened is that the Federal government said ‘We are now providing free money to help with health care in a different way. We will no longer help pay for the care of the uninsured, instead, we will pay to make them insured’, which saves _everyone_, both the states and the feds, money.

I.e, it wasn’t ‘You will pay more money or we will take this entire Federal program away from you’ that the Court idiotically thought it was, it was ‘We’re all going to do this less stupidly, and the money will all go through one place’.

John Konop December 18, 2013 at 9:03 pm

Or we could do it a third way……which is make the cuts and add efficiencies…..ie dial a doc for non emergency care, preventive care over emergency care, nurse practitioners over doctors, increase minimum wage……

DavidTC December 19, 2013 at 12:21 pm

And we’ll accomplish that using MAGIC! Expecto Medicaclinicum!

What you suggest is, indeed, a way to lower costs. What you have failed to explain, however, is a way for it to _happen_, especially in the rather short window before hospitals go bankrupt and have to close.

Nor is there any way to get very poor people to start using those things, especially as those things close money and hospitals don’t. ERs have to accept people, doctor’s offices don’t, and will reject people who can’t pay.

Unless, that is, you’re talking about subsiding those things to the level the Feds used to subsidies hospitals, and _officially_ making them free, where the state reimburses them for seeing patients.

That, admittedly, would be cheaper the state subsidizing the current ‘free’ hospitals’…but still very expensive for the state to manage, and did you seriously just propose a network of _free clinics for poor people across the state of Georgia_? You are aware of what state this is, right? And who controls the legislature?

Comments on this entry are closed.