Gov. Nixon issued the following statement after meeting with the House Majority Caucus this morning:
"I appreciate the House leadership for facilitating an open and honest discussion," Gov. Nixon said. "With the House currently considering a Medicaid bill that would implement significant reforms, today's meeting was an opportunity to discuss these and other ideas for making our health system more efficient and effective. Here in Missouri we do things differently than they do in Washington, and how we approach health care should be no exception. Medicaid reform the Missouri way will protect taxpayers, reward work, promote personal responsibility and bring the tax dollars Missourians send to Washington back to work here in Missouri."
Among the reforms being considered: financial incentives and penalties to promote personal responsibility and accountability among beneficiaries; safeguards to protect taxpayers, such as sunsets and triggers; using Medicaid funds to purchase private insurance, an option being explored in Arkansas; improving care coordination; and co-pays and cost-sharing arrangements to give Missourians a greater stake in their coverage as they move up the income ladder.
Last fall, Gov. Nixon announced his plan to bring the dollars Missourians send to Washington back to Missouri, and avoid the harmful consequences of cuts under the Affordable Care Act, by strengthening Medicaid. Since then, a broad coalition of organizations representing businesses, health providers, and law enforcement in every corner of the state has endorsed this proposal.
The House Committee on Government Oversight and Accountability is currently considering a bill sponsored by Rep. Jay Barnes (R-Jefferson City) that would expand coverage for low-income Missourians and implement reforms designed to reduce costs and promote personal responsibility.