Report details county-by-county exactly how North Carolina is losing out on jobs and other economic benefits due to the State Legislature’s refusal to expand Medicaid.
Funded by Greensboro’s Cone Health Foundation and Winston-Salem’s Kate B. Reynolds Foundation, researchers from George Washington University analyzed the losses in NC. The full report is available, with a handy “click on your county” map of the state, at
conehealthfoundation.com/ foundation/initiatives/nc- medicaid-expansion/ for specifics on the cost in jobs, tax revenue, and business growth.
With Medicaid expansion, the state would see 43,000 jobs created by 2020. It would gain more than $21 billion in federal funds by 2020, with a cost to the state of only $1.7 billion. In addition, state tax revenue could increase by a staggering $160 million between 2016 and 2020.
The report may aid local efforts to pass resolutions in town councils and county commissions. It may also help engage local hospitals in the campaigns. The hospital association supports Medicaid expansion because it will reduce the burden on individual institutions which currently provide medical care to poor people who can’t pay their way.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) subsidizes Medicaid expansion with 100% of the cost through 2016 and 90% thereafter. The program would cover people with below 100% of the federal poverty level who do not qualify for other insurance subsidies under ACA. In NC, that will be about 478,000 residents denied coverage by 2017.
Republican leaders in NC continue to repeat their opposition to expansion, though Gov. Pat McCrory, also a Republican, has expressed some willingness to reconsider his previous opposition. It may now be harder for opponents to make arguments again expansion.
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