Medicaid expansion could save state $100M

Florida could add more than 1 million lives to its Medicaid rolls and actually save costs, reported the Tampa Bay Times. The issue over whether to expand Medicaid eligibility in Florida has been overshadowed by Gov. Rick Scott's objections to the Affordable Care Act.

According to a new report released by Georgetown University's Health Policy Institute, Florida could expand its Medicaid program by between 800,000 and 1.3 million lives without incurring any additional costs.

Moreover, the study suggested Florida could save as much as $100 million a year on state-funded safety-net programs because the expanded Medicaid coverage would obviate the need to provide that service.

"It is time for Florida's elected officials to take a serious look at this option," Joan Alker, an associate professor at the Health Policy Institute, told the newspaper.

Scott, a Republican, had said he would not implement key provisions of the ACA in his state but has moderated his stance since the presidential campaign ended earlier this month and President Barack Obama narrowly won Florida as part of his reelection effort. 

For more information:
- read the Tampa Bay Times article
- here's the Georgetown Health Policy Institute's conclusions (.pdf)