Ark. House Delays Vote On Medicaid Expansion; Maine Lawmakers Offer Compromise
In Arkansas, the House held off on a fifth vote for funding the state's "private option." The Maine compromise would expand Medicaid while also reforming the program.
The Associated Press: House Delays Vote On Medicaid Expansion
Arkansas House Speaker Davy Carter challenged opponents of the state's compromise Medicaid expansion Tuesday to offer an alternative that could break a legislative stalemate threatening the future of a program that provides subsidized coverage to more than 93,000 people. The House delayed plans to vote for a fifth time on the "private option," after Carter backed off his vow to take up the bill every day on the program's future until it passes (2/25).
Bangor Daily News: Moderate Republicans Unveil Medicaid Compromise That Expands Coverage, Dramatically Reforms System
A bill drafted by two moderate Republican senators, meant to be a compromise on the divisive issue of Medicaid expansion, was unveiled to lawmakers Tuesday. The plan combines House Speaker Mark Eves' planned expansion of Medicaid, known here as MaineCare, to roughly 70,000 low-income Mainers under the auspices of the Affordable Care Act, with a plan by Sen. Roger Katz, R-Augusta, to reform the state's MaineCare program (Moretto, 2/25).
The Associated Press: Maine GOP Lawmakers Craft Medicaid Expansion Bill
Maine would expand Medicaid under the federal health care overhaul while also implementing other significant changes to the program, under a bill laid out Tuesday by two Republican lawmakers who hope to garner the support of more of their GOP colleagues to override the objections of Republican Gov. Paul LePage (Durkin, 2/25).
And in other states --
Politico Pro: Corbett Predicts Approval Of Medicaid Expansion Plan
Democrats have piled on Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett over a proposal to expand Medicaid that they say is too restrictive to win federal approval. But Corbett has a message for them: Think again. "You want a good inside tip? Go bet them, and bet on me," the Republican told Politico at the National Governors Association winter meeting. Corbett, who's facing a difficult fight for a second term, announced a plan last week to accept Obamacare's huge Medicaid expansion and use it to buy private health insurance for Pennsylvania's poorest residents (Cheney, 2/25).
Newark Star-Ledger: Christie: 'Proud' Of Expanding Medicaid But Costs Need Better Management
Gov. Chris Christie said today he was "proud" of his decision to expand Medicaid through the Affordable Care Act, but plans to introduce better oversight to the $12 billion program so it can serve the 1.4 million people who rely on it for health care, housing and other services. In his budget address today, Christie took aim at what the medical professionals call "super-utilizers:" the people with chronic health conditions that frequently end up in emergency rooms and get admitted to the hospital. He said he has enlisted the nine schools that make up Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, as well as University Hospital in Newark, and Rutgers Camden, to find a more cost-effective way to reduce their reliance on costly hospital care (Livio, 2/25).