State hospital associations are pushing hard to ensure Medicaid is expanded under the Affordable Care Act in as many parts of the country as possible, reported Stateline Health News.
Lawmakers in states that oppose expanding Medicaid cite concerns that federal plans to financially support the expansion may not be long lived. As a result, as many as 17 million Americans who would be eligible under the Medicaid expansion may not be able to obtain coverage, according to Stateline.
"For many hospitals it's existential; it's really talking about the future viability of their institutions," Shawn Gremminger of the National Public Hospital Association told Stateline.
In the Show Me State, the Missouri Hospital Association has released a study equating an opt-out to Medicaid expansion as a hidden tax on the state's families--an argument embraced by the state's Democratic Governor, Jay Nixon, according to KSMU.
In Ohio, a similar argument has been made, with the Ohio Hospital Association and its membership saying not expanding Medicaid coverage would lead to greater cost-shifting, according to the Columbus Dispatch.
"It's the business community that ends up paying the freight, and they're paying more than what they should," OhioHealth CEO David Blom told the Dispatch.
Meanwhile, recent reports point to the unexpected consequences of declining the largely federally funded Medicaid expansion--exposing hospitals and businesses to financial strain.