Legislature's Refusal to Expand Medicaid Will Cost NC Billions: Study

Oct 19, 2015

North Carolina's Republican-dominated legislature has so far refused to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.  It's already been noted by the North Carolina Institute of Medicine that not expanding Medicaid is costing around 500,000 state residents coverage.  Now a new report from the Center for Health Policy Research at George Washington University commissioned by the Cone Health Foundation finds the refusal to expand Medicaid would cost North Carolina $21 billion in federal matching funds between 2016 and 2020 and tens of thousands of jobs. The analysis looks at the costs to the state on a county-by-county basis. 

In a report by the Winston-Salem Journal before the legislature completed its long-discussed Medicaid reform bill, Governor Pat McCrory says Medicaid expansion is a "very complex issue."  He has said that the state would need to reform Medicaid before considering expansion.  Now McCrory has signed that reform bill into law.  And expansion proponents are saying the legislature is running out of excuses. 

You can take a look at the study yourself and check your county for the cost of not expanding Medicaid at NCMedicaidExpansion.com

For example, here are the numbers for Buncombe county:

Credit Cone Health Foundation (ncmedicaidexpansion.com)

You can hear the full interview with Cone Health Foundation president Susan Shumaker in the audio file at the top of the page.