Time to expand Medicaid in N.C.
Regarding the March 25 news article “Opposition in GOP sinks repeal effort”: A major new and timely opportunity for North Carolina lawmakers has just opened in health care. With the demise of the health care bill in the U.S. Congress, North Carolina lawmakers have a unique opportunity to enhance the health of state residents.
Under the ACA, Medicaid expansion has always been an option in North Carolina as in other states. So far, North Carolina has opted out. With the ACA here to stay, at least for the foreseeable future, and with conservative administration of the Health and Human Services Department, it is highly likely that the conservative N.C. legislature could agree on expansion of Medicaid under the ACA on acceptable terms using what is called the “innovation waiver” in the law.
I want to encourage Gov. Roy Cooper and the N.C. legislature to work toward an acceptable expansion of Medicare in a way that might be a model for other states which did not expand Medicaid on the basis of conservative objections.