Healthcare reform was on the agenda in Gov. Jay Nixon’s 2013 state of the state address as he called upon lawmakers to broaden Medicaid so more Missourians would have access to healthcare. Nixon’s proposed budget includes an expansion of Missouri’s Medicaid program. Estimates are the plan would add nearly 260,000 lower-income adults to the healthcare program through the use of $908 million in federal funds, money that would be received by opting in to the federal Medicaid expansion. In his recent state of the state address, Nixon argued the expansion would create jobs for many Missourians and would bring increased revenue to the state.
Governor Jay Nixon pitched a nearly $26 billion budget to the state of Missouri during Monday night's State of the State Address. It includes spending increases for K-12 schools, higher education, and the proposed Medicaid expansion he’s been calling for since late November.
Missouri lawmakers have convened their 2013 session with Republican supermajorities controlling both the House and Senate.
Republicans have made tax cuts one of their top priorities for the 97th General Assembly, which runs until May 17.
They also plan to pursue business-friendly changes to the state's legal system, a bonding proposal for colleges, job-protection changes for public teachers and potentially a new transportation funding plan.
Democratic Governor Jay Nixon is preparing to announce his support for a major health care initiative.
Nixon scheduled news conferences Thursday at Truman Medical Center in Kansas City, Barnes Jewish Center in St. Louis and Jordan Valley Community Health Center in Springfield.
He will be joined at some of the stops by officials from the Missouri Hospital Association and the Missouri Primary Care Association. Both groups are part of a new coalition urging Missouri to expand Medicaid eligibility as called for by President Barack Obama's health care law.
Missouri’s participation in a federal Medicaid expansion would be an economic boon for the state and even pay for itself, according to a new report commissioned by the Missouri Hospital Association and the Missouri Foundation for Health. Under the federal health law, states can choose whether or not to expand Medicaid, which provides health insurance to the poor and disabled. The federal government would fully pay for an expansion during the first few years, but many state lawmakers, like Republican house speaker Tim Jones, worry about the long-term costs.
A new report says Missouri's Medicaid costs could rise by 6.6 percent over 10 years if the state fully implements the federal health care law.
But the report also says almost half of that increase will occur even if Missouri does not expand Medicaid eligibility for adults.
The report by the Kaiser Family Foundation and Urban Institute says Missouri can expect to spend an additional $1.2 billion from 2013 to 2022 as more people join the Medicaid rolls because of the federal health care law.
Richard Freese sits in the waiting room of Family Care Health Centers in St. Louis. Freese is self-employed, servicing and selling industrial machines. But he says if he wound up hospitalized, he’d have no income – and no way to pay his bills.