Published Saturday, December 08, 2012
Gov. Nathan Deal decided to join seven other states and decline the expansion of Medicaid. In my opinion, this callous political decision will do more harm to the elderly, disabled and children in the Georgia than first thought.
Medicaid covers more than 60 million individuals nationwide. These individuals include kids in foster care, terminally ill, blind and disabled. Also, 59 percent of children of low-income families and 68 percent of all nursing home patients nationwide are covered by Medicaid. These individuals are not freeloaders.
Now, many hospitals, doctor’s groups, advocates for the poor, some business associations nationwide are pressing for conservative-elected officials to accept the expansion.
Recent economic analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation and The Urban Institute state that, under Obamacare, for every $1 a state spends they will receive $9 from Washington to help cut their cost and expand Medicaid. Most states would come out ahead and spend less. Florida and several other states stated they would actually create jobs on the Medicaid expansion.
Deal, without explaining other than repeating GOP talking points, turned his back on the poor, elderly and disabled. It was the perfect time for Georgia to help its own, knowing that Medicaid is the only option for the poor. But no, for the sole purpose of political gain, Deal took the low road.
Shameful act indeed, Deal.
Ricky Page, Newnan