Health
4:35 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Bill To Ban Medicaid Expansion Voted Down

The New Hampshire House has killed a bill intended to block the state from expanding its Medicaid program.

Opponents of expansion argue that the state can’t afford to grow the health care program for the poor.

But Thomas Sherman, a doctor and Democrat from Rye, told lawmakers the issue is one of social responsibility.

Sherman: “These are New Hampshire people. Our constituents. These are your family, your neighbors, and my patients.”

The House voted 206-155 to table the measure filed by former House Speaker Bill O’Brien, a Republican from Mont Vernon.

Governor Maggie Hassan has included Medicaid expansion in her proposed budget. It comes with an estimated price tag of $85 million through 2020.

New Hampshire’s Medicaid program currently insures poor children, the disabled and low income pregnant women. Expansion would add 58,000 adults that earn less than roughly $15,000 a year to the roles.