The Republican-controlled Ohio House passed a substitute budget plan this week that removes Gov. John Kasich’s proposed Medicaid expansion (Source: “GOP leaders take Medicaid plan off budget,” Cincinnati Enquirer, April 9, 2013).
The Ohio Medicaid Expansion Study, a partnership between the Health Policy Institute of Ohio, the Ohio State University, the Urban Institute and Regional Economic Models, Inc., has projected that:
- Expansion would create savings and new revenue that would exceed the cost to the state, resulting in an additional estimated $1.8 billion to $1.9 billion in net fiscal gain in the nine-year period between 2014 and 2022
- An additional 450,000 Ohioans would gain health coverage because of the expansion
- All 88 counties would realize a drop in uninsured rate, an increase in tax revenue and an increase in employment because of an expansion
Meanwhile, competing plans for expanding coverage through federal Medicaid dollars have emerged from the Ohio House. One day after Republicans stripped it out of the state budget plan, House Democrats introduced a bill to expand Medicaid elibigibility through a bill separate from the state budget plan (Source: “House Democrats introduce stand-alone bill to expand Medicaid for Ohio's working poor,” Cleveland Plain Dealer, April 10, 2013).
And Republican Rep. Barbara Sears announced plans to introduce legislation in the coming weeks to create a three-year pilot where, subject to federal approval, Ohio would use the federal funds offered in a Medicaid expansion to buy private health insurance for the expansion population instead of expanding Medicaid rolls (Source: “‘Ohio solution’ to Medicaid debate would try to preserve $13 billion in federal funds” Columbus Dispatch, April 12, 2013).
The House has released a detailed list of changes it has made to Gov. Kasich’s budget and he Governor’s Office of Health Transformation also has prepared an “impact report” on what the decision to not extend Medicaid eligibility would mean for Ohio.As policymakers continue to weigh the decision of expanding Medicaid eligibility in Ohio, the Health Policy Institute of Ohio has posted all of its Medicaid resources on its page dedicated to the program at www.hpio.net/medicaid.