Virginia Lawmaker Who Switched Stance On Medicaid Expansion Was Braced For Backlash. It Never Came.
“I’ve been to Republican mass meetings. I’ve been out and about, ballgames, this and that,” Del. Terry Kilgore said. “What I’ve heard people say is, ‘Hey, what you said made sense. We don’t mind helping people if they’re helping themselves.’” Virginia is in the midst of a hot debate over the issue, with the House wanting to expand the program and the Senate refusing to budge. Outlets report on Medicaid and work requirement news out of Minnesota and Colorado, as well.
The Washington Post:
Republican Medicaid Expanders In Va. Say Backlash Is Milder Than Expected
Del. Terry Kilgore did an about-face on Obamacare this year, voting to add up to 400,000 poor, uninsured Virginians to the state’s Medicaid rolls after years of steadfast opposition. When the Southwest Virginia Republican returned home from Richmond after the General Assembly adjourned, ads on his local radio station were blasting him — and broadcasting his office phone number. Bankrolled by conservative powerhouse Americans for Prosperity, the ads urged voters to call and let Kilgore have it. (Vozzella, 3/29)
The Associated Press:
Medicaid Chief: Work Requirements Assessed 'Case By Case'
The federal Medicaid leader on Thursday declined to say whether imposing work requirements on certain beneficiaries is better suited for states that expanded Medicaid than those that didn't, saying her agency is assessing state proposals on a case-by-case basis. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma told reporters the program is about helping people rise out of poverty. (Mattise, 3/29)
The Star Tribune:
Medicaid Work Requirements Proposal Advances In The Legislature
Even as it continues to advance in the Legislature, a proposal to add a work requirement to Medicaid is meeting strong opposition from health care providers, counties and even some GOP legislators. Supporters say that the Republican-sponsored bill is needed because Medicaid discourages "able-bodied" people from working, even at a time when the state is facing a workforce shortage. (Howatt, 3/29)
Senate Bill 214 -- Seeking A Colorado Medicaid Work Requirement -- Fails
A Republican effort to create a work requirement for Colorado’s Medicaid recipients failed in a GOP-controlled committee Thursday after its first hearing, drawing outrage along the way from Democrats and people enrolled in the health care program. Senate Bill 214 sought to mandate that “able-bodied adults” seeking Medicaid benefits be employed, be actively seeking employment, volunteer with a nonprofit or be receiving job training. It also would have established a lifetime limit of five years for Medicaid services and a monthly income verification mandate. (Paul, 3/29)
Behavioral Health Provider Shortage Sparks Overprescriptions For Medicaid Kids
The CMS has revealed that physicians may be overprescribing psychotherapeutic medication to children on Medicaid or CHIP, which may be due to inadequate access to behavioral health specialists. The U.S. is experiencing a shortage of child psychiatrists, and many don't accept Medicaid, according to a new study from the CMS' Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation released in the April edition of the Journal of Behavioral Health Services & Research. (Dickson, 3/29)