Medicaid is a critical lifeline for many of America’s most vulnerable citizens. Unfortunately, because of Washington bureaucracy and rules, the program isn’t helping those it is meant to serve as well as it should.
One in three physicians are unwilling to accept new Medicaid patients. Unfortunately, Obamacare simply added more people to a broken system.
Simply put: We need to reform Medicaid so that it is flexible and responsive to those it was created to serve. That’s what the American Health Care Act—including improvements introduced last night—is designed to do, by transferring power back to the states.
For starters, our proposal will prohibit states from expanding into the current broken Medicaid system, effective immediately. It will maximize state flexibility by providing the choice between a per capita allotment or a traditional block grant, depending on a state’s specific needs. It will provide the option for states to implement work requirements for Medicaid recipients. Most importantly, it will ensure the rug isn’t pulled from underneath any able-bodied patient as he or she transitions to other coverage, like a plan purchased with refundable tax credits.
Ultimately, by giving states new control to protect their populations, they can implement solutions that actually work for their most vulnerable—especially the aged and disabled. Because what works in Wisconsin may not translate to California—so we’ll give governors and state legislatures the control and flexibility they need to improve quality of care and increase access to vital services for their citizens.
Consider this: In New Mexico, 61 percent of the Medicaid population are children, while 20 percent are adults. In comparison, New York’s Medicaid population is 37 percent children, 40 percent adult. No two states are identical—why should their approach to caring for their most vulnerable have to be?
As Speaker Ryan explained on Fox Business, “It turns Medicaid over to the states. . . . and the state legislatures and the governors take it from there. And then they craft Medicaid how they want to in their states. That is what this bill does.”
Here’s what a dozen grassroots conservative organizations wrote about these ideas in a letter to Congress:
“By converting Medicaid to a per capita allotment and putting the massive program on a budget, it would shield taxpayers from rapidly escalating costs, encourage innovation, and shift power out of Washington and into state capitals.”
The American Health Care Act is designed to make sure the most vulnerable patients—the children, the elderly, the blind, the disabled—get the care they need and deserve. Through historic reforms, our proposal will save taxpayer dollars and increase state control, allowing Medicaid to best serve those who need it most.
Want to learn more about the American Health Care Act? Visit speaker.gov/healthcare.