Letter: Gutting Medicaid
Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner said that he would not vote for the Senate health care bill “if it doesn’t create a sustainable path for Medicaid.” You can see his strategy in that verbal sleight of hand. Apparently, Medicaid is not sustainable unless you gut funding for it. It seems that Republicans have adopted a Vietnam War strategy in health care: “We had to destroy the village in order to save it.”
It makes as much sense now as it did then.
The House bill, according to the Colorado Health Institute, is estimated to kick 400,000 Coloradans off of Medicaid by 2030. The Senate bill’s standard inflation baseline for the Medicaid per-capita block grant will no doubt drive that number higher.
Republicans say that high-risk pools will fill the gap. But high-risk pools have already been tried in Colorado.
It was called Cover Colorado and was among the most successful high risk pools in the country. It covered all of 14,000 Coloradans at peak enrollment, far, far less than the number covered by Medicaid expansion.
Colorado under TABOR will never fill the funding gap, and Sen. Gardner’s oldest, sickest and poorest constituents will pay the price.