With just over two weeks until the governor’s expected announcement regarding the possible expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, a new study finds the state has much to gain by such an expansion.
The non-partisan report finds Ohio stands to make $1.4 billion in savings and create over 30,000 jobs over the next decade while providing nearly 500,000 additional Ohioans with health coverage.
Co-chair of Advocates for Ohio’s Future, Mark Davis, says it’s a win for the state, a win for local governments and a win for Ohioans.
“We’re looking at it as a way in which we can really strengthen communities, provide additional jobs, decrease the number of uninsured, and bring in revenue to the state budget and to help out the local entities, too,” he said.
The report found that by reducing the number of uninsured, an expansion would increase Ohio employment and earnings, improve county finances and lower health care costs for Ohio’s employers and residents. Savings to the state would come mainly by shifting existing costs to the federal government, the report said.
Davis says there are a number of ways in which it can bring in additional revenue.
“The incarcerated population – recently released and being eligible for in-patient services – that would save a significant amount of money; prescription drug rebates would bring in an additional $218 million and of course, the taxes on the managed care organizations bring about $1.8 billion,” he said.
Gov. Kasich is expected to announce his decision on a possible Medicaid expansion when he releases the two-year state budget, which is due at the beginning of February.
The study was conducted by the Health Policy Institute of Ohio, the Urban Institute and Ohio State University. It is available at http://tinyurl.com/b2k7dvv.