Medicare and Medicaid

Although Virginia lawmakers are still locked in a stalemate over Medicaid expansion, over the next two days business leaders, health care providers, and technology innovators are addressing the rising costs of healthcare and how to mitigate them—whether lawmakers reach a deal or not.

It’s all part of the Virginia Chamber of Commerce-sponsored Virginia Health Care Conference held in downtown Richmond.

What's next?  It's the question being asked all over the Commonwealth after some lawmakers said if Medicaid expansion isn't part of the new budget, they ARE willing to hold out BEYOND the July 1st start of the new fiscal year. One political analyst agrees that whichever side blinks first could lose ground with that constituency—but there may be an alternative. 

The conservative group Americans for Prosperity organized a public forum in Charlottesville this week to discuss Medicaid expansion.  The featured speakers were two Republican Delegates who strongly oppose the idea, but it seemed they had come to the wrong place, as supporters packed the auditorium.  

Kaiser Health News

As the effort continues to press the Virginia House of Delegates to jump on board with Medicaid expansion, mental health advocates are warning of what could happen if those who are uninsured remain so. 

One coalition says that while both chambers have made addressing mental health a priority this session, those who suffer from illnesses will still face many challenges if they do not have the means to pay for critical services.

Medicaid Expansion: Two Sides, Two Opinions

Feb 25, 2014

The Commonwealth’s business leaders held dueling news conferences yesterday to express opposing views on enrolling hundreds of thousands of additional low-income residents in Medicaid. 

The Virginia Chamber of Commerce stressed that it’s against a traditional expansion of Medicaid—but it likes the state Senate’s plan for using private insurance through a new Marketplace Virginia.  The National Federation of Independent Business believes that Medicaid growth will become fiscally unsustainable.