Democratic Governors To Ask for Federal Assistance To Help Fund Medicaid Programs
Democratic governors today will visit Washington, D.C., to ask for additional federal funds and to address their differences with President Bush on a number of issues, such as health care, the New York Times reports. The Bush administration opposes legislation that would increase federal funds for states with "financial crises" prompted by decreased revenue and increased Medicaid costs (Pear, New York Times, 12/8). More than 24 states have said that they cannot maintain current Medicaid services without additional federal funds (Schodolski/Jones, Chicago Tribune, 12/9). A report released by the National Governors Association last month found that state expenditures on Medicaid and other health care programs, which account for 30% of state budgets, rose 13% last year, the largest increase in a decade (California Healthline, 11/26). According to the governors, federal lawmakers should temporarily increase the federal government's share of Medicaid costs, a proposal opposed by the Bush administration, and should "take full responsibility" for the health care costs of seniors who qualify for both Medicaid and Medicare. In the past decade, governors "have been exceptionally influential" in federal policy on health care and other issues, the Times reports (New York Times, 12/9).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.