On Wednesday, Gov. Nathan Deal said he would prefer Medicaid cuts in Georgia over spending more taxpayer money. Currently 1.7 million Georgians rely on Medicaid.
Deal is also in favor of states that expanded Medicaid cutting funding.
“There’s a lot of complaint now about decreasing those on the Medicaid rolls,” Deal told WABE, “I quite honestly think that needs to be done, because those states that expanded their Medicaid rolls have included people that really are able to work.”
Georgia hasn’t expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act and hundreds of thousands of Georgians are uninsured because of it.
“The cost of putting someone on a Medicaid program is really, truly expensive to the federal government, as well as to the state,” Deal said.
But the truth is that Georgia is actually losing $9 million a day because of Deal’s Medicaid blockade.
Whether Medicaid is being spent on the elderly and people with disabilities or people living in extreme poverty, it’s providing a necessary service. If federal funding for Medicaid gets cut, even more Georgians will lose access to health care. It will mean more expensive emergency room visits for routine health problems and bigger losses for our hospitals.
Medicaid is also the primary source of funding for treatment services for many people with substance abuse disorders and mental illnesses. Medicaid keeps rural hospitals open which increases the health and wellness of entire rural communities, not just the people on Medicaid. Medicaid helps families who have a family member with special needs to pay for special equipment and services.
Without Medicaid, many Georgians and their families will suffer. People will go without care and rural hospitals will close. Georgia’s quality of life will decrease.