PNS Daily Newscast - February 22, 2019 

North Carolina will hold a new election to fill the final disputed seat in the U.S. House. Also. on our Friday rundown: Baltimore sues Monsanto and others for polluting city waterways. Plus, a public lands program moves towards permanent status.

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MO Coalition on Pending Healthcare Bill: 'We are Very Worried'

A disproportionate number of Missouri's Medicaid population is children. (Soledadsnp/Pixabay)
A disproportionate number of Missouri's Medicaid population is children. (Soledadsnp/Pixabay)
June 19, 2017

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A broad coalition of Missouri hospitals, nurses, mental healthcare advocates, and parent-teacher organizations is feeling anxious as Republican Senators in Washington, D.C., work to draft a bill to repeal and replace Obamacare.

The Missouri Health Partnership is concerned that if the House version of the bill is any indication, funding for Medicaid would be cut dramatically.

Amy Blouin, the executive director of the Missouri Budget Project, says federal cuts would directly impact the Show-Me State.

"That would require either tax increases on the state level, cuts to other services like public schools or cuts to healthcare," she says.

President Donald Trump recently called the House version of the bill he originally championed "mean." Senators have expressed a desire to vote on their alternative bill by July 4.

The Missouri Health Partnership stresses that Medicaid eligibility rules in the state are already some of the most strict in the country. Blouin says it's also important to note the makeup of Missouri's Medicaid population.

"About 63 percent of the total are kids, and they're kids in low-wage families," she adds.

The Senate bill has been kept under tight wraps. The most recent analysis of the House bill by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services estimated it would have left about 13 million more Americans without health insurance in the next decade.

Kevin Patrick Allen/Shaine Smith, Public News Service - MO