Mo. Senate unsettled on Medicaid expansion
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Mo. Senate unsettled on Medicaid expansion

Date: October 2, 2013
By: Hanna Battah
State Capitol Bureau

In the battle between high-quality health care and cost-effective coverage, Missouri Senators have still not chosen a side.
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Wrap: A committee to make changes to Missouri's Medicaid system is split on whether they will expand coverage before they move funding.

Republican Senator Jay Wasson says he doesn't want to consider expansion until they know where Missouri is benefiting from the programs.

Actuality:  WASSON2.WAV
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Description: You know, whether we do expansion or not, I'm not willing to talk about right now. I wanna try to get the reforms down and see where the money is at. Then I'm more than willing to talk about expansion.

Other senators didn't immediately propose expansion, but Democratic Senator Joseph Keaveny from St. Louis asked lawmakers to follow the parameters of the Affordable Care Act.

Reporting from the state Capitol, I'm Hanna Battah.


Missouri lawmakers are at odds with health care reform and expansion.
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Wrap: Several Republican senators-- including committee chairman Gary Romine from Farmington--say the biggest issue facing health care reform is addressing Medicaid recipients who take advantage of the system.

Democratic Senator Joseph Keaveny from St. Louis says their best bet is to start with the federal health care reforms, then focus on statewide program changes.

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Description: We need to figure out a way to mold a program that fits the basic parameters that have been stipulated by the federal government.

A senate Medicaid committee plans to meet mid-November to draft a report on health care reform.

Reporting from the state Capitol, I'm Hanna Battah.

Missouri lawmakers are still unsure if they will expand statewide Medicaid coverage.
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Wrap: Despite threats to lose $4.2 billion of federal support, Missouri Senators won't commit to expansion.

During a committee meeting Wednesday, several Senators brought up concerns about recipients' fraud.

Republican Senator Jay Wasson suggested Missouri adopt other states' prevention measures meant to hold recipients accountable.

Actuality:  WASSON.WAV
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Description: Whether it's a 20 dollar a month card that they get to spend on medical expenses and if they miss an appointment they lose it. If they go to the emergency ward for the most expensive place to get their health care. Something like that I'm very interested in, because I think that changes behavior.

Republican Senator David Sater says they made health care funding cuts in 2005 because they saw system abuses and they don't want to go back to that.

Reporting from the state Capitol, I'm Hanna Battah.


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