How Medicaid Cuts Would Impact State Budgets: Brooklyn Roberts on Newstalk STL

Medicaid is almost 30% of state budgets, so if the federal government starts paying less, the state governments will start paying more.

Brooklyn Roberts, senior director of the Health and Human Services Task Force, spoke with Tim Jones and Chris Arps on Newstalk STL about a Wall Street Journal op-ed she co-authored with Thomas Savidge discussing what the Fitch Ratings downgrade of the federal government could mean to state budgets and Medicaid. She also discussed the alternatives being examined in the states in regard to healthcare system options for patients.

Medicaid is almost 30% of both state budget. So, when the federal government’s borrowing capacity is either lower are or it’s harder to borrow money and we started looking at you know, let’s say about a situation and we concluded that when the federal government is forced to cut spending, they’re going to look for Medicaid before they look for Medicare and Social Security.

As far as the Medicaid expansion goes, we’ve got about 39 states now that have expanded their Medicaid programs. The federal government is currently covering 90% of the cost of that expanding population right now. As we talked about, when they look to make cuts, I think that number will likely go down. And you can just look at health care prices, which have also been hit by inflation. They’re about 10% higher than they were a year ago.

We all know that and having the largest menu of options available so that people can get the coverage that best fits their needs is the way to go with that. We’re looking at things like healthcare price transparency, to let people know what their what their healthcare is costing.  We’re also looking at alternatives to health insurance like health care sharing ministries, Farm Bureau type plan and association health plan. I think it’s more about giving people options.

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In Depth: Health

There has never been a time when both federal and state jurisdictions have been more in control of American’s healthcare than it is today. Implementation of the Affordable Care Act is well in motion, and each state has considered how to address provisions of the federal law as it has…

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