Medicaid expansion debate to start on Wednesday

Photo provided by NBC33
Louisiana Politics

POSTED: Tuesday, April 23, 2013 - 8:00pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, April 23, 2013 - 9:31pm

The fight for Medicaid expansion starts on Wednesday morning, but those hoping to see the expansion of the program are already getting vocal.

"We're asking the governor to negotiate with the current administration to craft a plan that will allow us to receive the monies that the Affordable Health Care plan offers to expand Medicaid,” said Melvin Rushing with Together Louisiana.

With petitions in hand, people from across the state are asking the governor to re-think his stance on Medicaid, claiming his decision is hurting hundreds of thousands.

"I have a son, and he's not employed, so he would be able to go and see the doctor, not run to emergency when he gets sick,” stated Medicaid advocate Ruth Bryant. “He needs to see a doctor, but he doesn't go, because when you go to the doctor without insurance, you really get pushed to the side."

They're hoping if their pleas don't win him over, the latest projected numbers will; the State Fiscal Policy Board said that if the state would accept the Medicaid expansion, it would save Louisiana over $500 million in five years.

When Medicaid talks start, supporters say they've got a plan.

Governor Bobby Jindal has told NBC33 numerous times he's going to oppose any type of Medicaid expansion.

The debate starts at 9:00 a.m.

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