Ned Brooks: Medicaid mayhem

February 7, 2013 

Medicaid mayhem

The state Senate wants to take money out of my pocket and the pockets of the millions of other North Carolina patients who have health insurance. Why? The Senate voted to refuse expanding Medicaid to 500,000 or more people who are uninsured.

When the uninsured get care but can’t pay for it, the rest of us help cover their expenses. Hospitals and other providers shift the costs of covering the uninsured to paying patients by charging them more than the cost of care. It’s common practice.

What has the Senate done? It wants to cost shift the nearly $15 billion the feds would have paid for uninsured care between 2014 and 2021 to North Carolina residents. That’s a lot of money, which otherwise would greatly help our economy and create jobs. Incredibly shortsighted. Incredibly bad for the state.

Ned Brooks

Clinical Professor, Gillings School of Global Public Health, UNC-Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill

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