MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — State officials are warning that hundreds of thousands of Minnesotans could lose Medicaid coverage under the health care reform bill Congress is debating.
It’s the latest effort of Republicans in Washington to repeal Obamacare — which they’ve been promising for years — without a plan to replace it.
Gov. Mark Dayton was at the State Capitol Monday with a few of the 1.2 million Minnesotans who are on Medicaid.
About 22 percent of all Minnesotans are on Medicaid. It pays 54 percent of all nursing home costs.
Of those on Medicaid, 60 percent of them are seniors and people with disabilities.
One of them is Kate Swenson’s son, who has autism.
“If [Medicade] goes away, we don’t know what we’ll do, because in the short time he has been there, public education couldn’t take care of him,” she said. “They’ve taught him skills — such as using the toilet, drinking from a cup, sitting in a chair. If we lost that, my son will regress dramatically. And there are no other options.”
That’s just one big change Minnesota’s facing. State officials say the state will lose $8 billion in health care funding by 2026.
Congress is making one last effort this week to repeal and replace the Affordable Health Care Act, but it’s running into serious trouble.
While the Republicans control the Senate, if they lose one more vote, the bill is dead — and probably for good.
On Monday night, there’s a national debate between the authors of competing bills. On the Republican side are Sens. Lindsey Graham and Bill Cassidy. On the Democratic side are Sens. Bernie Sanders and Amy Klobuchar.