WEAU | Eau Claire, Wisconsin | News

NEW INFORMATION: Advocates for the poor question Walker's Medicaid plan

By: AP Email
By: AP Email

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Advocates for the poor in Wisconsin are questioning whether Gov. Scott Walker's plan to move more people off of state Medicaid plans and onto a federal marketplace where they will purchase private insurance will work as promised.

Walker says the plan he unveiled Wednesday will result in about 5,000 fewer people being on Medicaid, but increase the overall number covered by insurance by 224,580. Those people would purchase their coverage through the federally run health insurance exchange and not be covered by Medicaid.

But Bobby Peterson, head of the public interest law firm ABC for Health, said Thursday the poorest people kicked out of Medicaid will have a hard time affording even the $19 a month coverage under the exchange.

Peterson says people like them will lose insurance coverage.

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Republican Gov. Scott Walker says he won't expand Wisconsin's Medicaid services to 175,000 childless adults as the federal health care overhaul law allows.

Instead, Walker announced Wednesday a hybrid approach that he says will drop the state's uninsured non-elderly adults from 14 percent to 7 percent.

Walker's plan would tighten the income threshold to qualify for Medicaid, but also lift the cap on a program that covers childless adults. He says the net effect would insure 224,580 more people.

Walker was among the last Republican governors to decide whether to move forward with the expansion. Six Republican governors have agreed to the Medicaid expansion.

Wisconsin's hospitals and many medical and health advocacy groups had urged Walker to accept the federal money to pay for the expansion of services.
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MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker plans to announce on Wednesday his much-anticipated decision on whether Wisconsin will expand its Medicaid services as allowed under the federal health care overhaul law.

Walker spokesman Cullen Werwie said Tuesday that Walker's decision would be made public Wednesday.

Democrats and a host of health care advocacy groups and others, including Wisconsin hospitals, have been urging Walker to take the expansion.

Six Republican governors have already said they would expand Medicaid as allowed under President Barack Obama's law.

An estimated 175,000 childless adults in Wisconsin are expected to qualify for Medicaid starting in 2014 under an expansion.

Walker is an opponent of the health care law and has already decided not to create a state-run marketplace for insurance providers.


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