Nixon: Push to expand Medicaid will continue

05/21/2013 4:23 PM

05/21/2013 4:23 PM

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon may have lost the battle, but he’s not conceding that he’s lost the war.

Nixon issued a letter today that he had sent to more than 200 organizations that came together to pass expansion of Medicaid during the legislative session.

That effort fell short, but Nixon said the cause will continue. He called the defeat “a temporary setback.

“With these facts and a growing coalition on our side, momentum will continue to build for strengthening Medicaid in Missouri,” Nixon said.

“Please join me in the coming days, weeks, and months and continue to educate your neighbors, colleagues and elected representatives. Let them know strengthening Medicaid is the smart business decision that will strengthen our economy. Let them know that you want your tax dollars spent in your community, not in some other state.

“And let them know that making it easier for hundreds of thousands of working Missourians to get basic health care is simply the right thing to do.”

Under the proposed expansion, low-income, working Missourians who cannot afford health insurance and earn less than 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level – or $32,500 a year for a family of four – would be eligible for coverage. Governor Nixon said bringing these dollars back to Missouri would put downward pressure on insurance premiums, provide access to treatment for 50,000 Missourians with mental health challenges and ease burdens on local law enforcement agencies.

“Our coalition remains united, dedicated and determined to move our state forward,” he said.

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