Garcia Medicaid Expansion Shortsighted
(Washington, D.C.) – Congressman Joe Garcia has called on the state of Florida to expand Medicaid, but offers no solutions for the serious problems plaguing the program. This proposed expansion would not only cost state taxpayers billions in the years ahead, but would continue the failed focus on government-based solutions to our health problems. Rather than guaranteeing people access to doctors and health care, it would push them into what has been described as a "caste system" that does little to help beneficiaries. Additionally, in light of the increasing national debt crisis, some in Washington are recognizing that the growing cost of the current Medicaid program is unsustainable which may result in cuts to the program as part of the effort to reduce deficits.
Furthermore, numerous states have highlighted the government's inability to adequately undertake and manage the Medicaid expansion they launched under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare. California has forced hundreds of thousands of low-income applicants to wait for months just to have an application processed. And the state has no reliable data on how many doctors accept Medicaid, or whether recipients will be able to find care. The state of Oregon has also been unable to manage its Medicaid expansion. The program is locking out applicants, forcing others to wait months for appointments, and straining emergency room capacity. Many states face possible tax increases to fund Medicaid.
To provide timely and accurate information about the implementation and effects of the health care law, the LIBRE Initiative today will launch a series of new microsites regarding the law. Starting today, state-specific information will be available for Latinos – and others – in Florida, Texas, Arizona Virginia, Colorado, and Nevada. Visit healthcare.thelibreinitiative.com to review the pages and learn more about the law.
Jorge Lima, Policy Director of The LIBRE Initiative, released the following statement:
"Low-income families deserve better health care options than Medicaid. While it's well intentioned, the government's management of the program has resulted in a costly and overburdened system in which many doctors do not participate. Expansion will make it harder for current beneficiaries to get care. Sadly, government-run health care is inefficient and just doesn't work very well.
The American people are counting on elected officials to fix broken programs – not just expand them for political gain without a plan to actually make them work for beneficiaries and taxpayers. On health care, it is time for solutions that empower patients and consumers, expand choice, and encourage more medical professionals to come into this system – so our shortage of doctors does not grow far worse. Sadly, few in Washington are willing to lead. They're far more likely to play politics."