WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Virginia To Decide On Future Of State's Medicaid

Play associated audio

When the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of most of the Affordable Care Act, it was left up to the states whether or not to expand Medicaid eligibility.

Virginia lawmakers must consider which other costs could be avoided by expanding Medicaid coverage, the price for not expanding it, and the additional resources that might be needed.

Legislative Fiscal Analyst Joe Flores told the Senate Finance Committee that the makeup of who would be covered would change significantly under the broader coverage.

"You're going to pick up a lot of adults without children, and some single adults who are not currently covered under Medicaid," says Flores. "Men-women, about even, and then you're going to pick up a slightly younger population — under 35, you're talking about 52 percent being under the age of 35."

State costs for the 2016-2018 biennial budget would likely be $233 million, excluding administration. Flores says the expansion has potential cost savings, but there also could be a downside. For example, local government staff will have higher caseloads, there will be a greater demand on the healthcare workforce, and there's uncertainty about whether the cash-strapped federal government can pay its share.

The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis says if the state does not expand Medicaid, it could forego billions in federal funds and leave many people without coverage.


Lush And Romantic 'Handmaiden' Is The Year's Most Irresistible Love Story

Though he's known for making quasi-horror films, director Park Chan-wook's latest movie is a melodrama set in 1930s Korea. Critic David Edelstein says The Handmaiden is fun and full of twists.

Technology May Rescue Male Baby Chicks From The Grinder

The egg industry may soon eliminate a wasteful – and to some, horrifying – practice: Slaughtering male chicks. New technology can identify male embryos in eggs before they enter incubation chambers.

FBI To Reopen Investigation Into Hillary Clinton's Email

FBI Director James Comey told congressional leaders the agency came across further emails from Clinton's private email server and is determining whether they contain classified information.

A Moment Of Silence For The Black And Brown Talent That Grew On Vine

We'll miss Vine, but not just for its goofy, raw, six-second looped videos. We'll miss the platform for its ability to incubate young black talent.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.