Republican Governor John Kasich's administration is moving forward with plans to require more than 1 million low-income Ohioans to pay a new monthly cost for Medicaid or potentially lose coverage.
House Republicans added the idea to the state budget enacted last summer. The provision requires Kasich's administration to seek a waiver of federal Medicaid rules so that Ohio can require certain Medicaid recipients to pay into a health-savings account regardless of their income. The plan requires federal approval. Ohio Medicaid Director John McCarthy told The Associated Press on Wednesday that the administration will make a draft of the waiver available for public comment beginning April 15. Officials then plan to incorporate feedback into the draft. McCarthy said he tentatively plans to submit the proposal to Washington in mid-June. Meanwhile, a new study by the non-profit Robert Wood Johnson foundation shows states like Ohio that have expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act are saving money.
Foundation spokesperson John Lumpkin says most of the states that expanded Medicaid did so under Democratic governors. Many states with Republican governors did not. Kasich fought with members of his own party to expand Medicaid.