Inside Politics: Medicaid Expansion A Real Success For Idaho | Chroniclers

Inside Politics: Medicaid Expansion A Real Success For Idaho |  Chroniclers

Idaho politicians have all kinds of catchy quotes about health insurance – how it doesn’t keep you healthy and how no one ever died from not having it. This is simply not true. Research shows that people with health insurance are healthier than those without, because they can access regular doctor visits and preventative care. Helping everyone access health insurance should always be a legislative priority, and it never has been. more urgent than it is now amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fortunately, in 2018 Idaho voters embraced the Medicaid expansion, which was expected to bring Medicaid coverage to approximately 90,000 Idaho residents. As of this writing, more more than 105,000 Idaho residents have signed up for extended coverage. The total number of Medicaid beneficiaries has increased, in part due to the loss of their jobs during the initial economic contraction in the early days of the pandemic.

With more people in need of coverage and many of them with untreated health conditions, this meant that our cost estimates were sadly low. But with a higher federal contribution during the pandemic for traditional Medicaid, we are actually saving short-term state dollars. For example, the Idaho Department of Corrections has saved $ 8.3 million over the past two fiscal years due to the expansion of Medicaid, which has absorbed some of what was previously fully funded by the State. Investing in this necessary health care service also makes fiscal sense for our state, not just for…

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