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Director Says Medicaid Expansion Still Sustainable

Andy Chow
Ohio Department of Medicaid Director Barbara Sears (right) walking with Office of Health Transformation Director Greg Moody (middle) and Gov. John Kasich (left).

An argument is brewing in the race to become Ohio’s next governor. Medicaid expansion has been a crucial topic in the campaign with both candidates, Mike DeWine and Rich Cordray, taking different approaches to the issue. One piece of the debate is over whether the expansion is sustainable. 

Republican Gubernatorial candidate Mike DeWine is now saying firmly that he wants to keep Medicaid expansion, although he argues that it’s unsustainable in its current form.

Medicaid Director Barbara Sears says the program is still financially viable even as the federal reimbursement is about to decrease.

“But that’s by and large made for with our managed care tax and hospital fees so even from a dollar and cents standpoint we can make a case for being sustainable,” says Sears.

DeWine has proposed lowering costs by creating work requirements for healthy adults and more wellness programs.

His opponent, Rich Cordray, has long been a supporter of Medicaid expansion and says the federal dollars make it a good deal for Ohio.

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