My old hometown paper reports
that Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam
is continuing intensive discussions with the feds over a deal for the state to expand Medicaid. Haslam has reportedly been interested in some elements of the Arkansas-style private option
, but has had trouble finding an agreement palatable with the federal Department of Health and Human Services
(HHS). Any deal has to get through the Obamacare-hating Tennessee legislature.
Currently, 27 states and the District of Columbia have expanded Medicaid, while 23 are still holding out.
Meanwhile, earlier this week HHS released a report
finding that hospitals are facing $5.7 billion less in uncompensated care costs because of Obamacare, with states that expanded Medicaid getting the bulk of that benefit (about three quarters of the reduction took place in the expansion states).
The non-expansion states have already forgone billions in federal money (remember, expansion is fully federally funded from 2014-2016), even as they pay in to fund the expansion in other states.
Another day to be thankful that Arkansas found a way forward.