[Update: Utah Access+ couldn't get enough votes to move forward.
Lets see, the Utah House GOP earlier this year was willing to invest $30 Million for Utah
Cares, coupled with a 70/30 split would be $100 Million total to help
the poor adults with health care. The kids are already eligible. That
The Governor wanted Healthy Utah where the state would
need $80 Million with the 90/10 split, but the $80 Million wasn't
UtahAccess+ funds the $80 Million with the $30 Million from the
state and $50 million from the health care providers, as new taxes and
fees. What killed UtahAccess+, or likely did, was Greg Bell saying the Hospitals, who would make tens if not hundreds of
millions a year on either Healthy Utah or Utah Access+, didn't want it if
there was no cap other than the 6%.
They were willing to pay $25
Million total and if it was more, they weren't.
So, go back to Utah Cares, there are the votes and the funding for it.
It covers those that can't make money because they need health care and
Should Utah do something? Yes. The Federal Government, in the attempt to
make sure everyone can have medical insurance has made it worse. What
we should do re: Medicaid expansion is what we do in other areas where
people need help.
We should provide short term aid and work to provide a long term
solution. Prove caps on time and money. Do not take away individual
responsibility. This isn't Medicare, something that everyone retiring
has to deal with.
This is Medicaid, something that was designed for those that can't
afford other options. ObamaCare trying to make more people fall into
that category isn't the answer.
Don't Expand Medicaid in Utah. Do care, Do provide short term aid and work to solve the long term solution.
The Utah Access+ bill isn't final, but what is being proposed at this time is covered in the following documents:
A almost Draft Bill for Utah Access+ is at:
Earlier this year I voted for a proposal called Utah Cares. A copy of that bill is here:
The Cost to the State Taxpayers would eventually be approx. $30 Million per year.
We have people that can't work because they need health care and don't make enough money to qualify for help. Those are the ones we need to focus on and encourage people to make more money, not less.
The other main proposal was called Healthy Utah.
The cost to the State Taxpayers for Healthy Utah would eventually be approx. $80 Million per year, would have no cap for budgeting, would cover people not in the "Coverage Gap", and would expand medicare to 138% of poverty level.
Currently on Medicaid or Chip, children are covered, as are adults with children under 50% are covered and approved disabled adults under 100%.
The largest healthcare coverage gap are for
adults that are not disabled under 100% of poverty and
adults with children between 50% and 100% of poverty. (The Children are covered)
Adults over 100% of poverty, but under 400% qualify for subsidy plans through ObamaCare.
The only reason to expand Medicaid to 138% is so the state will get a 90/10 Federal/State split on the cost of the expansion population medical costs vs the 70/30 Federal/State split we currently pay and will continue to pay for the non expansion population medical costs. The 90/10 Split would allow Utah to provide coverage for more people using more Federal dollars.
Healthy Utah crossed the 100% of poverty line and would have moved those between 100% and 138% to Medicaid. Utah Access+ does the same thing. The biggest difference is the cost.
Utah Access+ uses about $30 Million in State money, similar to Utah Cares, but adds approx. $50 Million in new taxes to the Medical field. Many of those with the new taxes would benefit from the new federal money but not all.
I oppose the new $50 Million in taxes. I oppose expanding Medicaid to 138% of poverty.
Federally, we can revise solve many of the healthcare problems without ObamaCare. Expanding Medicaid under ObamaCare is the wrong direction.
We can help people that can't work because they need health care and don't make enough money to qualify for help, without expanding Medicare. I am working to move the discussion back to Utah Cares and that focus. A step, not as big as some want, but a step none the less is the correct approach.
To take the stand that it is all or nothing that the Governor did with Healthy Utah and now Utah Access+ with the $50 Million in new taxes and fees is just wrong.