The business case for Medicaid expansion

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(AP)

If you’re a middle-aged Georgian, the odds that you’ll live to age 75 have improved a bit over the past decade.

But if you’re white, middle-aged and live in rural parts of the state, it’s another story entirely. According to statistics kept by the state Department of Public Health, the chance of premature death among that demographic group has risen by 13 percent since 2005. Among white women living in rural Georgia, “years of potential life lost” prior to age 75 has risen by an astonishing 27 percent.

Most of those people live in communities represented in the Georgia General Assembly by Republican legislators. In order to make a political point, those elected representatives of the people have been insistent on not expanding Medicaid insurance to hundreds of thousands of lower-income Georgians, among them many of their own constituents.

And the consequences of that decision go well beyond unnecessary death and illness. Doctors are increasingly unable to make a living in rural areas with high numbers of uninsured citizens, and are either fleeing or retiring and are not being replaced. Hospitals in those regions are also closing, taking with them a large number of better-paying jobs. In addition, companies looking to relocate or grow are much less likely to locate in communities without access to health care.

Until now, humanitarian arguments about lost lives, premature deaths and unnecessary pain and illness have fallen on deaf ears and hard hearts, but change may be in the air. The Georgia Chamber of Commerce has taken up the issue and has begun to stress the economic argument, pointing out the billions of dollars in federal money that Medicaid expansion would bring into the state and the tens of thousands of jobs it would create. In a task force report issued this week, the chamber offered legislators three possible ways to expand Medicaid coverage while still staying true to “conservative principles.”

For some, of course, that remains an impossible contradiction. They don’t believe that a government-financed health insurance program can be reconciled with conservative ideology no matter what benefits it might bring.

It doesn’t matter to them that 31 other states, under both Republican and Democratic leadership, have accepted expansion. It doesn’t matter that under Gov. Mike Pence, Donald Trump’s running mate, Indiana has expanded Medicaid coverage and provided health insurance to an additional 345,000 people. It doesn’t matter that a relatively poor red state such as Arkansas has cut its uninsured rate from 22.5 percent, one of the highest in the nation, to less than 10 percent, one of the lowest. Nor does it matter that Arkansas, for example, reports $131 million in annual budget savings and additional revenue thanks to its Medicaid expansion, more than offsetting its additional cost.

So if the humanitarian impact doesn’t convince you, and if the economic and budget impacts don’t convince you, then congratulations, your ideological purity is impressive. But to those in need of medical help that they can’t afford, to those living in communities where the local hospital teeters on bankruptcy, to those who are dying years too early, your ideology is probably pretty poor comfort.

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2542 comments
Chris Peters
Chris Peters

Danger Danger - Medicaid was meant for the truly indigent. Once you die the state can sue your estate to "claw back" any benefits paid out including nursing home/assisted living expenses. The truly poor may not care as they don't have assets to be seized after they pass, but for many middle class folks the decision to go on Medicaid is a "Sophie's choice" dilemma. Being unable to pass on your home to your children is a nasty outcome. So is having them getting notices from the state that they're coming after inheritance money,

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

So in response to Trump surrogate's taco truck claim, taco truck's across the country are now allowing voter registration.  Big ups to them for making Trump and his team look like big donkey a$$es.  LOL

RantNRave
RantNRave

Hey cons,


check out the look of fear on Putin's face.


PRICELESS !


Check out the look on the Black man


in the backgroud who is probably a


Secret Service agent.


His expression says to Putin, if


you feel froggie JUMP CHUMP.


Obama ain't skeered of POOTY TANG!


Obama gives Putin his best death stare at the G20 summit in China
heeheeheeheeheeheehee

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaWrTJC1fOw


BuckeyeGa
BuckeyeGa

@SNC,

I mentioned Burns below and how td was a fan

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@td1234 I know another pastor that vouched for Trump and he turned out to be a pathological liar just like Trump.


No, Burns is not a Kappa, he didn’t serve in the military and did not receive a college degree—all claims he made which were found to be untrue. When caught, he blamed the media for trying to “destroy his character.”Burns, who came into national prominence this year as an unabashed surrogate and Donald Trump supporter who spoke at the Republican National Convention, was caught in a matrix of lies this week, which he dubiously tried to get out of on camera.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@BuckeyeGa Republicans bring forth black preachers every four years to woo black votes with empty promises.  It has never worked and it still is not going to work.  

BuckeyeGa
BuckeyeGa

@Byte me,

That's a part of it

Kamchak
Kamchak

50-state poll shows why Clinton holds the advantage over Trump

 The massive survey highlights a critical weakness in Trump’s candidacy — an unprecedented deficit for a Republican among college-educated white voters, especially women. White college graduates have been loyal Republican voters in recent elections, but Trump is behind Clinton with this group across much of the country, including in some solidly red states.

JohnnyReb
JohnnyReb

@Kamchak if Hillary's victory depends on winning Georgia, forgetaboutit!

She has about as much chance as did Nunn and Carter.

Kamchak
Kamchak

@JohnnyReb 

 She has about as much chance as did Nunn and Carter.

Archived for later reference.

ByteMe
ByteMe

Greta leaves FOX immediately, without even a wave goodbye.


Old white guy takes her place tonight....

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

Unlike with many Conservative voters, progressives do not care about the facts of a candidate.

~~~@td1234 


More hypocrisy for td and his boot lickers that gave him an atta boy down below.  Pastor Mark Burns, Trump supporter, lied about 6 years in army reserve, college degree, masters program and Kappa Alpha Psi.  LOL


After the third lie was exposed, Burns became very serious and asked if the interview was “off the record.”

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@DownInAlbany @StraightNoChaser @td1234 You were one of the boot lickers that liked td's comment. The other one just licked your boot.   A hit dog will holla every damn time.


Unlike with many Conservative voters, progressives do not care about the facts of a candidate.

~~~@td1234 

DownInAlbany
DownInAlbany

 It's HAMMER TIME!!!MC Hammer, you ask?No, ballpeen hammer.

_GodlessHeathen_
_GodlessHeathen_

@DownInAlbany I could see the scenario playing out like a scene on the HBO show VEEP. 


Just destroy it.

How?
I don't know, smash it with a hammer.

Does anyone have a hammer?
I have one at home.
Can you bring it tomorrow?

ByteMe
ByteMe

@DownInAlbany Orange pantsuit is still funny.  I won't go so far to say as it will never not be funny -- "deep bench" still keeps that distinction -- but it's still funny today.

Donnie_Pinko
Donnie_Pinko

What is happening to our great nation as a result of Donald Trump is no cheap joke, Donnie.

-

Do you liberal folk really believe that what is happening to our country is solely the doing of Donald Trump, that if he's defeated danger will have been largely averted?

honested
honested

@Donnie_Pinko @honested 

No, but mother nature seems to be doing a great job of cleansing the problem from our midst.

Better education will solve the rest.

Donnie_Pinko
Donnie_Pinko

@Eye wonder @Donnie_Pinko 

So someone who believes that Hillary Clinton's election will only strengthen the forces that have produced Trump is a 'fence sitter' in your view? 

Donnie_Pinko
Donnie_Pinko

@honested @Donnie_Pinko 

Ah I see, so the view advanced by Hedley that Trump's support comes largely from a group of 'dead-enders', hold-outs among the older generations unwilling to get with the program of a multicultural society.

honested
honested

@Donnie_Pinko @honested 

A 'viewpoint' supported by statistical analysis and not really  subject to blind ideology.....

So I comprehend why you ignore it.

Donnie_Pinko
Donnie_Pinko

@MaryElizabethSings @Donnie_Pinko 

But, as many analysts are now writing, Donald Trump is a result of that particular kind of conservative agenda. 

-

Would that be the same kind of 'conservative agenda' that the Goldwater girl has been a full-throated supporter of along with her husband for 25 years?  

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@Donnie_Pinko

I didn't write that it was "solely" the doing of Donald Trump.  Again, you think in too broad a sweep of generalities for my thinking.


 And, a public blog, in which only short answers are acceptable to the reading public, is no place for a discussion in depth of what has happened to our nation over the past 40 years.  But, as many analysts are now writing, Donald Trump is a result of that particular kind of conservative agenda, gone to extremes. 

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

A reminder--several national polls had McCain ahead of Obama in mid-September 2008.

However, 538 never gave McCain a projected EV lead at that point--nor did 538 when Romney made things interesting in some national polls, around the same time, in 2012.

kitty72
kitty72

@ByteMe @Visual_Cortex I saw that yesterday. And this is the rag that Trump believed regarding Cruz's dad being part of the JFK conspiracy. Unfreaking believable.

TetoLeo
TetoLeo

500 homicides in 9 months?

Really we have to be able to do better than this.