KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Idaho Alternative To Medicaid Expansion Approved By Legislative Committee

The measure would provide some basic health services to those who earn too much to qualify for Medicaid but aren't eligible for premium subsidies under the federal health law. But it wouldn't cover prescription drugs, hospitalization or expensive treatments. Other outlets report on Medicaid expansion efforts in Utah and Virginia.

The Associated Press: Idaho Panel Backs Medicaid Expansion Alternative
Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter's proposed alternative to Medicaid expansion passed its first hurdle in the Idaho Legislature Thursday. The $30 million plan dubbed the Idaho Primary Care Access Program would provide basic health care services to the estimated 78,000 Idahoans who make too much to qualify for Medicaid but also don't qualify for health insurance subsidies. The measure wouldn't cover expensive treatments, hospitalization and most prescription medications for the gap population and would function by providing primary care clinics with an estimated $32 per month for each indigent patient they treat. (Haake, 2/11)

KSL (Salt Lake City, Utah): Diverse Group Urges Lawmakers To Expand Medicaid
It was a different cast of characters testifying about the need for Medicaid expansion in Utah Thursday. What is typically an unending list of patients pleading with lawmakers to give them access to health insurance, Thursday's meeting was filled with organizational executives, local religious leaders, doctors and other providers, professors and experts, economists and general advocates for Utah's uninsured. (Leonard, 2/11)

The Washington Post: Virginia Poll Shows Partisan Divide On Gun Control, Medicaid
Virginia voters want hospitals to pay for Medicaid expansion, don’t want businesses to deny service to gay customers and do support background checks at gun shows, a new poll shows. Christopher Newport University’s Judy Ford Wason Center for Public Policy surveyed voters on hot-button issues before the General Assembly. ... Support for the general notion of expanding Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act stands at 61 percent with support among a majority of African Americans, ideological liberals and Democrats. More than half of Republicans and conservatives oppose extending coverage to 400,000 uninsured Virginians. (Portnoy, 2/11)

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