Medicaid ties up Senate Health Committee
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Medicaid ties up Senate Health Committee

Date: March 6, 2007
By: Sarah D. Wire
State Capitol Bureau

Intro: Medicaid debate tied up the Senate Health Committee for three hours Tuesday as the program's ability to be held accountable was brought up several times. RunTime:
OutCue: SOC

Under the proposed bill, those on Medicaid would have the option of a health care advocate who would help coordinate medical care. It is unclear if the health care advocate would be paid for their work.

Senate Majority Leader Charlie Shields is the sponsor of the bill. He tried to define what a health care advocate does, saying anyone from a nurse, a dentist or a psychiatrist could fill the role. But his response didn't satisfy many who testified.

Van Ellen, spokesman for the AARP, says his group supports the legislation but worries about the logistics of how a health care advocate would function.

 

Actuality:  AARP.WAV
Run Time: 00:09
Description: We don't know who can serve these roles, are they going to receive any training at all? And of course there's the cost issue.

The committee did not vote on the Medicaid bill Tuesday.

From the Capitol, I'm Sarah Wire.


Intro: Missourians on both sides of the proposed Medicaid bill spoke to the health committee Tuesday about lingering problems with the bill. RunTime:
OutCue: SOC

One recurring theme arose as both opponents and proponents of the proposed Medicaid bill testified Tuesday, it's good, but it could be better.

Jackson County Public Administrator Rebecca Lakewood testified on behalf of the people in her district saying that although the proposed plan would be easily to understand it still doesn't do enough to help the mentally challenged.

 

Actuality:  LAKEWOOD.WAV
Run Time: 00:12
Description: We welcome the notion of change and the development of essentially a single source, a home for these people but I do have concerns about the bill in it's current format.


 

Those advocating the bill praised it as a step in the right direction but said the issue was too vague because it relies on appropriations for funding, pays doctors for having healthy patients and gives rewards that can be used toward things like dentistry.