Senator Barbara Favola Urges Medicaid Expansion
At Tuesday's Senate Democratic Caucus press conference, Senator Barbara Favola spoke in support of Medicaid expansion in the state budget. She said:
"About a million Virginians who add to our economy through service jobs, including construction, tourism, and social services, lack health insurance. These people are working hard, but they simply can’t afford to see a doctor.
Virginia must take the opportunity to help more people get access to health care by expanding Medicaid. This makes sense for Virginia taxpayers and the health care safety-net providers.
If we reform Medicaid, around 250,000 Virginians will have access to quality care from a doctor who sees them regularly and knows their needs. The costs of care for these individuals will no longer be shifted to you and I through higher premiums.
Increasing coverage is also great for jobs and the economy.
The federal government will pay all the costs to expand coverage for three years. After that, it will pay no less than 90 percent.
Over the next decade, Medicaid expansion will put $29 billion into Virginia’s economy, creating 30,000 jobs and other economic activity that will generate general fund revenue. Most will be in areas of the state with the highest unemployment.
Expanding Medicaid also saves the state money.
Those who criticize the cost of making Medicaid available to so many more Virginians are arguing against reality. Even the Governor’s own estimate shows that the cost of expansion is just about balanced by the millions of dollars the state will save.
For Virginia, the choice is clear: Improve the health of Virginians, grow jobs, and help our families. The future health and well being of our Commonwealth depend on it."