About 45 percent of births in Ohio are paid for by Medicaid, a program now in the throes of a major spat over whether to expand it and how.
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2.3 million: Number of enrollees in Medicaid, including 1.15 million children
$19 billion: Annual cost in state and federal funds
64.3: Percentage of the cost that is covered by the federal government; the remainder, 35.7 percent, is paid for by the state.
53: Percentage of kids through age 4 covered by Medicaid
84,000: Number of providers that deliver health care services paid for by MedicaidMedicaid Proposals:
Kasich Plan: Expand Medicaid to include Ohioans who earn up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level, which is $32,500 for a family of four; include a ‘circuit breaker’ to shut off the expansion if the federal funding drops below the promised levels; simplify the number of eligibility categories; impose co-pays for adults in Medicaid who earn more than 100 percent of the poverty level. The plan would bring in $13 billion in federal funding over the next seven years and extend coverage to 275,000 Ohioans.
Sears Plan: (Named after State Rep. Barbara Sears, R-Sylvania) Expand Medicaid eligibility but only if the federal government pays 100 percent of the expanded costs for the first three years and then phases it down to 90 percent in 2020 and beyond; include a ‘circuit breaker’ to cancel the expansion if federal funding falls below promised levels; institute reforms such as enrolling 80 percent of Medicaid recipients in private sector plans and ban drug addicts from getting narcotics they abuse through the health care system; promote job training and employment services to assist adult Medicaid recipients to get into the workforce. The expansion program would sunset in June 2015 so that the General Assembly would have a say in whether to renew it.
Other Plans: House Finance Committee Chairman Ron Amstutz is working with Democrats and Republicans in both the House and Senate to come up with a reform bill that would make Medicaid more efficient and help enrollees graduate from needing Medicaid coverage. Amstutz said he hopes to introduce a bill in June. Republicans Jim Butler of Oakwood and John Adams of Sidney plan to roll out a bill this summer to push changes that will cut costs, reduce the number of people on Medicaid, and improve the quality of care.
- Recent ballot issues
- Uphold collective bargaining rights (citizen referendum on Senate Bill 5, 2011)
- Casino gambling (citizen initiated constitutional amendment, 2009)
- Indoor smoking ban (citizen initiated statute, 2006)
- Minimum wage (citizen initiated constitutional amendment, 2006)
- Gay marriage ban (citizen initiated constitutional amendment, 2004)