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Indiana Democrats trying to jumpstart conversation on health care

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A coalition of Democratic senators and representatives gathered at the Indiana Statehouse Wednesday morning to “jumpstart the conversation” on health care exchanges and Medicaid expansion.

The exchanges and expansion are among the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act passed in March 2010. The six legislators said the federal law offers an opportunity to extend health care to all Hoosiers, yet they are dismayed there have been no discussions in the Legislature and no public dialogue on the implementation of the exchanges or the expansion.

Assistant Senate Democratic Leader Jean Breaux (R-Indianapolis) called the silence deafening.

Breaux and Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Ogden Dunes, used the press conference to announce their proposal, Senate Bill 540, which provides for the implementation of the federal ACA.

The bill has two parts. The first part addresses the insurance exchanges and calls for the establishment of a committee to study and make recommendations to the legislative council concerning the implementation of an exchange. The second part calls for changes in the Medicaid eligibility requirements to allow for the program’s expansion.

The coalition emphasized the $20 billion the state is expected to receive over the next seven years in federal health care spending which would not only provide health insurance for Hoosiers but also create 47,000 jobs.

The lawmakers also highlighted areas they believe costs will be cut if Medicaid is expanded. Tallian, in particular, pointed to the Department of Correction which currently spends $100 million annually on medical care for inmates. With the expansion, these inmates would be covered by insurance.

“These are just the direct benefits,” she said. “They say nothing about the value of making sure everyone has health insurance.”  

Under the ACA, states have the option of setting up their own health care exchanges or having the federal government establish and run the exchange in the state. Gov. Mike Pence has said he does not believe Indiana should create an exchange because it could cost the state millions of taxpayer dollars.

Originally, states had until Jan. 1, 2013, to decide if they would run their own exchanges or let the federal government do it. However, the Obama administration has indicated it will give states more time to make a decision.

The Supreme Court of the United States ruling which upheld most of the ACA noted states do not have to expand Medicaid.

Pence has also raised concerns about the cost to Hoosiers if Medicaid is expanded. However, because the increasing Medicaid coverage is predicted to reduce the number of non-paying patients, Indiana hospitals and medical practices are expected to pressure the Legislature to expand the program.  

 

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  1. Im very happy for you, getting ready to go down that dirt road myself, and im praying for the same outcome, because it IS sometimes in the childs best interest to have visitation with grandparents. Thanks for sharing, needed to hear some positive posts for once.

  2. Been there 4 months with 1 paycheck what can i do

  3. our hoa has not communicated any thing that takes place in their "executive meetings" not executive session. They make decisions in these meetings, do not have an agenda, do not notify association memebers and do not keep general meetings minutes. They do not communicate info of any kind to the member, except annual meeting, nobody attends or votes because they think the board is self serving. They keep a deposit fee from club house rental for inspection after someone uses it, there is no inspection I know becausee I rented it, they did not disclose to members that board memebers would be keeping this money, I know it is only 10 dollars but still it is not their money, they hire from within the board for paid positions, no advertising and no request for bids from anyone else, I atteended last annual meeting, went into executive session to elect officers in that session the president brought up the motion to give the secretary a raise of course they all agreed they hired her in, then the minutes stated that a diffeerent board member motioned to give this raise. This board is very clickish and has done things anyway they pleased for over 5 years, what recourse to members have to make changes in the boards conduct

  4. Where may I find an attorney working Pro Bono? Many issues with divorce, my Disability, distribution of IRA's, property, money's and pressured into agreement by my attorney. Leaving me far less than 5% of all after 15 years of marriage. No money to appeal, disabled living on disability income. Attorney's decision brought forward to judge, no evidence ever to finalize divorce. Just 2 weeks ago. Please help.

  5. For the record no one could answer the equal protection / substantive due process challenge I issued in the first post below. The lawless and accountable only to power bureaucrats never did either. All who interface with the Indiana law examiners or JLAP be warned.

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