Monday, September 26th, 2016

Taking on more critics of Walker’s health care plan

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Over at the MacIver Institute, I take on more critics of Governor Scott Walker’s plan to cover 100% of those under the federal poverty line with the state Medicaid program and rejecting an expansion of Medicaid to 133% of the federal poverty line.

It’s also interesting how Kraig and Pollack are concerned about the affordability of the subsidized insurance policies in the federal health care exchanges. They claim expanding Medicaid eligibility will cost $6000 per recipient compared to the federal cost of $9000 per recipient of the health care exchange subsidies.

Perhaps they should be addressing their concerns about the exchanges to the Obama Administration. After all, part of the reason why Medicaid is cheaper is because of the lower reimbursement rates for medical providers, which also prevents many medical providers from accepting Medicaid patients. But another reason is the mandated coverage levels that add to the insurance premium costs.

Kraig and Pollack also profess concern that the Walker Administration is gambling that the Obama Administration will continue a waiver for BadgerCare coverage for those who are below poverty but don’t have children. That would actually be a concern regardless of the proposed Medicaid expansion. But if Kraig and Pollack are correct that Medicaid is a better deal for state and federal taxpayers than sending people to the federal exchanges, why would the Obama Administration end the waiver?

Surely Kraig and Pollack don’t think the Obama Administration would act out of spite or purely political motives, regardless of the cost? If they do, then perhaps they should be having conference calls announcing how they intend to lobby the federal government to do the right thing instead of announcing their hopes the legislature does the wrong thing.

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