Texas rejects health care law’s Medicaid expansion
Texas Governor Rick Perry yesterday announced it will not expand the state’s Medicaid program, as was planned under the health reform law. This is bad news, as many more Texas children would have qualified for care. Texas is also turning away $70 billion over six years in federal aid in the move.
“Our economy would benefit from this infusion, and our stretched health care system needs the boost,” said Eileen Garcia, chief executive of Texans Care for Children, one of our Texas member organizations, in a story in the New York Times.
In a letter announcing his intention to oppose the law, Perry also refused to set up a health insurance exchange for his state. Health insurance exchanges are marketplaces that states will set up under the health care law that provide a “one stop shop” for people to buy coverage. With exchanges, people can choose from a number of affordable plans that meet federal standards (no more junk insurance policies). Now the federal government will simply set up and administer the state’s exchange for them, dragging Texas kicking and screaming into providing better health options for its residents.