Washington, DC — Today, Kansas Governor Laura Kelly announced an agreement with the Republican State Senate Leader to fully expand the state’s Medicaid program, covering up to an additional 150,000 Kansans. In response to this historic bipartisan agreement to expand Medicaid, Protect Our Care Executive Director Brad Woodhouse released the following statement: 

“It’s undeniable that Medicaid expansion has enabled more Americans to receive coverage, and thanks to Governor Kelly’s leadership, an additional 150,000 Kansans will soon have access to care and vital health services through the program. In Kansas and across the country, voters continue electing Democrats because they promised to make Medicaid expansion a top priority, and today’s announcement is further evidence they are delivering on that promise. Republicans who continue blocking efforts to expand Medicaid do so at their own political peril. 

“While states like Kansas march ahead to expand Medicaid coverage through the Affordable Care Act, President Trump and Republicans are in court trying to destroy the law and make the progress that Kansas has made disappear. President Trump and Republicans in Congress should look at this bipartisan agreement in Kansas as a model and start working to improve American health care instead of continually working to undermine it.”  

BACKGROUND:

Medicaid Expansion Saves Lives. A report by the Center On Budget And Policy Priorities found that “the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) expansion of Medicaid to low-income adults is preventing thousands of premature deaths each year, a landmark study finds.[1] It saved the lives of at least 19,200 adults aged 55 to 64 over the four-year period from 2014 to 2017. Conversely, 15,600 older adults died prematurely because of state decisions not to expand Medicaid.” [Center On Budget And Policy Priorities, 11/6/19

Medicaid Expansion Led To Gains In Coverage For Children. A study in Health Affairs found that “710,000 children gained public coverage when their parents enrolled in Medicaid between 2013 and 2015. If the remaining 19 non-expansion states expanded Medicaid, 200,000 additional children would gain health coverage through existing programs. The effect was largest among children whose parents gained Medicaid eligibility through the expansion.”  [Georgetown University Center for Children and Families, 1/12/18]

For more on the benefits of Medicaid expansion, click here

If Trump Gets His Way, Medicaid Expansion –Which Covers 17 Million People Nationwide– Would Be Eliminated. 

  • 150,000 Kansans who could gain coverage under this proposal will be denied that possibility. 
  • Access To Treatment Would Be In Jeopardy For 800,000 People With Opioid Use Disorder. Roughly four in ten, or 800,000 people with an opioid use disorder are enrolled in Medicaid. Many became eligible through Medicaid expansion.
  • Key Support For Rural Hospitals Would Disappear, leaving Kansas hospitals with $313 million more in uncompensated care.