January 23, 2017

Trump’s Plan to Endanger Medicaid Patients

Robert Pear, The New York Times:

President Trump’s plan to replace the Affordable Care Act will propose giving each state a fixed amount of federal money in the form of a block grant to provide health care to low-income people on Medicaid, a top adviser to Mr. Trump said in an interview broadcast on Sunday.

The adviser, Kellyanne Conway, who is Mr. Trump’s White House counselor, said that converting Medicaid to a block grant would ensure that “those who are closest to the people in need will be administering” the program.

Medicaid is already administered by those who are closest to the people in need. The program provides means-tested, state regulated, medical insurance aid to older and poorer Americans. Block grants don’t put control any closer to the people in need.

As several elected officials quoted said, a block grant is a fixed sum. Unanswered remains what happens to that sum when costs rise, new, more effective and expensive drugs are introduced, and populations expand.

Do you know who Medicaid helps most? The elderly poor who cannot afford a nursing home, yet cannot take care of themselves. Single moms and their children who are un- or under-employed, and cannot afford medical care. Medicaid is specifically for poor people. That’s who we’re talking about endangering, here.

This is the cowardly way to eliminate a program. Rather than take the politically risky step of ending it outright, President Trump and the Congressional GOP will first move to fix costs, then cut those block grants over time. The program will whither and die of its own accord, leaving patients in need without health insurance coverage.

Is that what you want?

#Trump #GOP #fraud #Medicaid

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