Medicaid recipients have heartbeats, too. Where is the driving political determination to keep those hearts beating? Over 100,000 children – and 127,000 adult Missourians – have callously been thrown off Medicaid in the past 19 months, creating a public health crisis due to Missouri's legislative inaction.
The Medicaid Expansion Initiative 2020 gives voters the chance to expand Medicaid to all people making under $17,000 yearly or $23.000 for a family of two. This amendment is projected to bring insurance coverage to 215,000 Missourians, including 50,000 parents and 20,000 seniors. Missouri would join 36 other states that have already put their people first by expanding Medicaid.
Medicaid expansion will not raise taxes, but it WILL bring $1.5 billion in already paid federal taxes back to Missouri from Washington, D.C.
Six rural hospitals have closed in Missouri since June 2012. Medicaid expansion will disproportionately benefit rural communities and people of color, whose uninsured rates remain higher than statewide average. It will create jobs and protect rural hospitals, creating nearly $2 billion a year in economic activity.
Unelected Governor Parson's misleading talking points say the deep drop in Medicaid enrollment is due to low unemployment – even though many jobs are low-paying – and participants not returning required documentation. Deadlines for document returns are rushed and phone numbers for questions go to answering machines that disconnect calls before any questions can be asked. Disqualification notices seem to go out on the day of the deadline.
Petitions on Medicaid Expansion Initiative 2020 are available for signatures. See http://www.healthcareforMissouri.org.