April 5, 2013

Sisters of Charity Health System supports extending Medicaid

The Sisters of Charity Health System continues to strongly support extending Medicaid in Ohio and South Carolina.

Expanding Medicaid coverage to newly eligible adults below 138% of the federal poverty level will cover an estimated 450,000 uninsured Ohioans and 250,000 uninsured South Carolinians.

Today, Medicaid does not cover many low-income adults without dependent children -- a large portion of the uninsured.  The majority of uninsured adults have no regular source of health care, forcing them to delay or forego needed care when they are sick, dramatically limiting their access to preventive services, reducing productivity and threatening their health.

Through the Affordable Care Act, the U.S. government is helping states cover uninsured persons, funding most of the associated costs of extending Medicaid to this low-income population.  The federal government will assume 100 percent of the cost of covering newly eligible individuals for the first three years and will cover 90 percent of the costs thereafter.

Greg Moody, director of the Office of Health Transformation in Ohio, has stated that Medicaid expansion "would keep $2.4 billion of federal tax dollars that Ohioans have paid in Ohio over the next two years and that number is $13 billion over the next seven years." Also, an independent study prepared for the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services estimated that Medicaid expansion would increase federal funding by roughly $11.2 billion between 2014 and 2020.

The mission of Catholic health care calls us to serve vulnerable persons and to advocate for all those in need.  Increasing access to Medicaid will give 450,000 Ohioans and 250,000 South Carolinians the dignity of health insurance.  

Add your voice in support of Medicaid expansion by contacting lawmakers in Ohio and South Carolina through our online advocacy page or support one of the following efforts.

The South Carolina Hospital Association has launched a petition campaign, Remedy SC, to gather signatures in support of extending Medicaid in South Carolina. Learn more, sign the petition and encourage others to voice your support for extending Medicaid. The campaign notes that recent public polling consistently shows that a majority of South Carolinians support extending Medicaid coverage to 250,000 uninsured citizens living at or near the poverty level.

The Ohio Hospital Association is conducting similar efforts.

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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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