March 8, 2013

Health System Leaders Continue Call to Extend Medicaid

Through the Affordable Care Act (ACA), states may expand Medicaid coverage to persons up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level.  Increasing access to Medicaid will give 450,000 to 600,000 uninsured Ohioans and approximately 250,000 uninsured South Carolinians the dignity of health insurance. 

The debate is in the state legislatures.  Voices are needed now to encourage extension of Medicaid coverage.

Recently, Sisters of Charity Health System President and CEO Sister Judith Ann Karam, CSA, joined other leaders from the Northeast Ohio Medicaid Expansion Coalition for a Medicaid Expansion Assembly organized by Greater Cleveland Congregations. Along with executives from other area health systems, Sister Judith Ann addressed the 1,000+ attendees, calling for Medicaid expansion now. The Sisters of Charity Health System has long believed that health care is a fundamental right for all people, and that families and communities are stronger when everyone has access to quality, affordable health care.

The Sisters of Charity Health System has continued this call to extend Medicaid through many efforts. Our ministry leaders in South Carolina reached out to Governor Nikki Haley in support of Medicaid expansion. In a joint letter, Tom Keith of the Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina, Patricia Littlejohn of the South Carolina Center for Fathers and Families, George Zara of Providence Hospitals and Jo Pauling-Jones of Healthy Learners, collectively urged Governor Haley to expand Medicaid to nearly 250,000 uninsured South Carolinians. Sr. Judith Ann penned a similar letter on the topic to Ohio Governor John Kasich.

Across the nation, studies have shown that Medicaid coverage demonstrably improves health care outcomes and financial security for beneficiaries compared to being uninsured. Make your voice heard in support of Medicaid extension.  Visit sistersofcharityhealth.org/advocacy for resources to contact your lawmakers today.

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From its Cleveland headquarters, the Sisters of Charity Health System provides oversight, leadership and strategic direction to more than 20 organizations responding to community needs in Canton and Cleveland, Ohio, and South Carolina.

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