The Problem with Medicaid
Maine democrats want to add thousands (I’ve heard 50,000 and 70,000) of low-income Mainers to the Medicaid rolls in Maine. The last time they did that under Gov. Baldacci, the state ended up owing hundreds of millions of dollars to the states’ hospitals to pay for care that the state could not afford. We still haven’t paid that bill. Now they want to add more?
Oh, but the Federal Government promises to pay for adding them, you say! How many other Obama promises related to Obamacare costs have they kept? Besides, since when is Federal money free? Don’t we all pay taxes?
I am reading a book “Beating Obamacare” by Betsy McCaughey, Ph.D., a highly respected Constitutional scholar, patient advocate and one of the few people who have read the “Affordable Care Act” legislation in its entirety. Page 42 in the book states, “Section 1311 of the health care law says that each state shall establish an American Health Benefit Exchange.” Gov. LePage says “a state exchange puts the burden onto the states and the expense onto our taxpayers, without giving the state the authority and flexibility it needs.” Other governors agree. I don’t think anyone knows how a “Health Benefit Exchange” is supposed to work.
Page 51 in the book says, “But a report of the nonpartisan State Budget Crisis Task Force, released July 17, 2012, and chaired by two big-time democrats – former Lt. Gov. of New York, Richard Ravitch and former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker – warned that Medicaid expansion could push states into financial crisis if the federal gov’t breaks its promise to fully fund it.”
Page 53 in the book cites a University of Virginia study of 900,000 patients receiving different surgical procedures. The study found that Medicaid patients were 50 percent more likely to die in the hospital after surgery then patients with private insurance coverage. A further study by the “Annals of Internal Medicine” found that Medicaid patients were 13 percent more likely to die than patients with no insurance at all!
From these findings and other readings, I conclude that Mainers had better “look before you leap” into another hugely expensive Federal medical experiment. Remember, every time the Federal Government takes over a program, expenses balloon exponentially!