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Government/Politics

Opponents Of Plan To Charge Medicaid Recipients Small Premiums Urge Others To Sound Off

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Karen Kasler
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State Sen. Kenny Yuko (D-Richmond Heights) and Dr. Dana Vallangeon, CEO of Lower Lights Christian Health Center, talk with US Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH).

Opponents of the plan to ask the federal government for permission to charge 1.5 million Medicaid recipients small premiums to stay in the program are calling for critics to make their voices heard at a public hearing in Cincinnati today. But supporters say the plan will keep costs down and help those recipients be more engaged.

Democratic US Sen. Sherrod Brown said he’s concerned about the administrative costs of the plan, and that he feels it’s a GOP effort to shut down Medicaid expansion. “Every part to me matters. They went into this with the intent of restricting and stopping, not expanding and serving,” Brown said.

But one of the plan’s chief backers, Republican state Rep. Jim Butler of Oakwood near Dayton said the program is very similar to an Indiana program that was granted a waiver. "We’ve based this program on data. And it’s proven to work. And I would also ask, well, what’s their solution?”

The public comment period on the waiver ends May 16.

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