KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Kansas Legislators Add ‘New Twist’ To Medicaid Expansion Debate

Some lawmakers are contemplating a plan to eliminate the state's earned income tax credit in favor of expanding the low-income health insurance program. Meanwhile, in Utah, Salt Lake City's police chief casts the expansion as a way to prevent crime.

KCUR: Kansas Lawmakers Talk About Medicaid Expansion But There’s A Catch
Most conservatives in the Legislature favor reducing or eliminating the state’s earned income tax credit but oppose expanded eligibility for Medicaid, which was part of the Affordable Care Act. Kansas is one of 21 states that have not expanded Medicaid coverage to more low-income residents. Conversely, most moderates and liberals favor Medicaid expansion and support the earned income tax credit. Conservatives control the House and Senate leadership offices. (Ranney, 5/19)

Salt Lake Tribune: Utah Police Cite Medicaid Expansion As Crime Prevention Tool
Police Chief John King on Tuesday called for the Utah Legislature to accept federal funds to extend health insurance for thousands more state residents to prevent future crime, as well as save money. King made his plea along with a representative of Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, an anti-crime organization that supports Gov. Gary Herbert's Healthy Utah expansion plan, which includes provisions for treatment of mental health issues. "I'm not here as an expert on health care policy," King said at a news conference. But as a law enforcement officer, the chief — who stressed that he and Fight Crime: Invest in Kids are not equating mental illness with criminality — said he knows the toll that mental illness, behavior disorders and substance abuse can take. (Manson, 5/19)

In related news, Bloomberg reports on the Medicaid managed care rule, for which stakeholders are anxiously awaiting details -

Bloomberg BNA: CMS Set To Release Medicaid Managed Care "Uber Rule"
The CMS is poised to release in the coming weeks what stakeholders and advocates are calling an “uber rule” that will completely overhaul the Medicaid managed care marketplace. Agency officials haven’t offered much specific information about what may be included in the proposal, or even when it will be released—although it’s been under regulatory review at the OMB since March, and the agency has been working on the regulations for over a year. (Weixel, 5/19)

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