True and false on Medicaid expansion

The Sun-Suntinel

Among the flawed arguments made by opponents of Medicaid expansion in Mississippi is this one: Because Medicaid generally does not compensate hospitals enough for what it takes to provide the care, they could actually end up doing worse financially if the state expands the program to cover the working poor. That was what Douglas Carswell, the president and CEO of the Mississippi Center for Public Policy, wrote over the weekend in explaining his conservative think tank’s opposition to expansion. “Every time a rural hospital treats someone on Medicaid, the hospital normally loses money. How would expanding such a loss-making system improve the financial position of rural hospitals. It wouldn’t,” wrote Carswell, whose organization claims a number of adherents among Mississippi’s GOP lawmakers and state officials. “The problem is not too little Medicaid, but too much of it,” he continued. “Drawing more people and health care providers into this loss-making system solves nothing — and might make matters worse.”

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