Saturday, November 27, 2021

Play

Don't want the hassles of Black Friday - consider a refurbished gift this year; day after Thanksgiving travel could be messy - and supporters regroup for recreational marijuana in South Dakota.

Play

Big retailers predict an historic holiday shopping season, but small businesses are not sharing that optimism, and economists weigh in on what s behind the nation's labor shortages.

Play

South Dakota foster kids find homes with Native families; a conservative group wants oil and gas reform; rural Pennsylvania residents object to planes flying above tree tops; and poetry debuts to celebrate the land.

Researchers: Medicaid Block Grants Would Hurt Ohio Kids

Play

Tuesday, April 30, 2019   

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Researchers say national talk of turning Medicaid into a block grant program could threaten health-care coverage for vulnerable kids in Ohio.

States currently share the cost of Medicaid with the federal government. With a block grant, states would get a set amount of money and would need to cover any differences if the program exceeded costs. Supporters say it would make the program more efficient.

At the Center for Community Solutions, researcher Loren Anthes countered states could end up restricting who qualifies or reducing services in order to save money.

"You suddenly are putting state policy makers and the state department of Medicaid into a very difficult position where they're making toxic tradeoffs between who is and who is not deserving,” Anthes said. “The most likely victims of that budget consideration are going to be the people with the biggest needs."

Medicaid covers more than 1.1 million Ohio children, and about 60 percent of Medicaid beneficiaries nationally who are younger than age 19 have a disability. Anthes said because they have higher health-care costs, services for children with special needs would be the most susceptible to cuts.

He added the next target for cuts could be children - the second largest group for Medicaid expenditures.

Supporters contend block grants would give states flexibility with their Medicaid dollars, and perhaps the ability to address other enrollee needs, such as housing or food. Anthes said there are many drawbacks that should be considered.

"Before policymakers put forward something that may sound good, let's talk about this in terms of dollars, cents and in terms of your constituents, maybe your family members, and really try to outline what some of the impacts of these choices may be,” he said.

Anthes contended rather than experiment with access for children or others who rely on Medicaid as a way to control costs, it would be wiser to examine why prices are high in the first place.

"What are things that are happening that are costing us tens of millions of dollars that have nothing to do with people who rely on this coverage?” he offered. “So let's talk about price, let's not fiddle with things that could potentially compromise access to care for children."

President Donald Trump's budget proposal calls for cuts to Medicaid and block-grant funding, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services reportedly are drafting a plan to encourage states to apply for a waiver to implement their own block grants.

Disclosure: The Center for Community Solutions contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Health Issues, Poverty Issues, Welfare Reform. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
Vicki Harder-Thorne is honoring 30 years of sweat equity her parents put into restoring 80 acres of land in Ottawa County. (Harder-Thorne)

Environment

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Succession is an inevitable process for Ohio farmers, and it can also be an opportunity to re-imagine the land. Vicki Harder-…


Environment

HELENA, Mont. -- To honor the Biden administration's steps toward greater ties with tribal nations, conservation groups are calling on it to list the …

Social Issues

PIERRE, S.D. -- Supporters of establishing recreational marijuana in South Dakota say they're pouring all their energy into a new ballot initiative…


Farming is Virginia's largest private industry, according to the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

RICHMOND, Va. -- In central Virginia, permanent access to land is one of the biggest barriers to farming. A new land-trust model aims to secure both …

Social Issues

BOSTON -- This holiday season, consumer advocates are urging Commonwealth residents to consider giving gifts that don't require purchasing anything…

The mission of the 'Buy Nothing Project' is to promote the giving of goods and services within hyperlocal circles. (bfleeson/Pixabay)

Social Issues

AUSTIN, Texas -- Supply chain delays have some holiday shoppers stressed that gifts won't be on store shelves on this "Black Friday," or won't arrive …

Social Issues

DETROIT -- As cold weather moves in, state agencies are working to make sure Michiganders know how to apply for the Michigan Energy Assistance …

Social Issues

NEW YORK -- A team of New York-based filmmakers is producing a documentary about reclaiming Indigenous heritage, told through the experiences of an 18…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021