REPUBLICANS REFUSE TO STOP MEDICAID PRIVATIZATION OR PROVIDE OVERSIGHT

CapitolDes Moines, IA – With Medicaid privatization just two days away, Republicans in the Iowa House refused to stop the Governor’s plan to privatize health care for 560,000 Iowans or even provide additional oversight.

“House Republicans have known about this disastrous privatization plan for over a year and have refused to do anything to stop it,” said House Democratic Leader Mark Smith of Marshalltown.  “With just two days to go until privatization, Republicans still won’t listen to the concerns of Iowans or even provide more oversight to make sure no Iowans fall through the cracks.”

Lawmakers learned today there is a nine year old boy with a brain tumor from McGregor, Iowa that had to delay chemotherapy treatment at Mayo Clinic this week because of Medicaid privatization.  House Democrats offered plans today that would stop privatization, make sure Iowans on Medicaid could treatment at the Mayo Clinic, and provide additional oversight of Medicaid privatization.  All three ideas were turned back by House Republicans, who refused to even debate the issues.

“There is still too much confusion because Iowans can’t get answers to questions about their health care starting April 1.  There are real lives at stake here, but House Republicans still refuse to take action,” added Smith.

In Iowa, about 560,000 low-income individuals, including children, those with disabilities and the elderly rely on Medicaid health insurance. Medicaid in Iowa spends less per person than the majority of other states, while still providing comprehensive coverage.

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