Medicaid Expansion

NH News
5:24 pm
Wed November 20, 2013

Medicaid Compromise Looking Dicey

Gov. Maggie Hassan has spent the last several days taking her push to expand Medicaid out side of Concord, and into the districts of GOP Senators.

Speaking at SNHU, in the home district of Republican David Boutin, Hassan said the GOP needs to bend.

"Every time we put forward a compromise, we are told that it’s no good, it’s still their original plan."

Back at the statehouse, Senate President Chuck Morse insisted that’s not true.

"We are open to suggestions.'

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Health
6:39 pm
Thu November 14, 2013

Parties Continue To Negotiate On Medicaid Expansion

House and Senate leaders continue to debate an expansion of the state’s Medicaid program to more low-income New Hampshire residents.

A key difference between the two sides is how quickly New Hampshire moves an estimated 35,000 individuals from Medicaid into the exchange to obtain private insurance.  

House leaders and the Governor say the GOP’s plan to shift people in 2015 won’t work. Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley, are defending their proposal.

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Health
1:29 pm
Wed November 13, 2013

GOP Rejects Hassan's Compromise On Medicaid Expansion

Governor Maggie Hassan
Credit Chris Jensen, NHPR News

Governor Maggie Hassan and House Democrats are offering to adopt the Senate’s plan for Medicaid expansion provided they make certain changes, but GOP leadership says the proposal falls short of a compromise.

On Wednesday, Hassan and House Speaker Terie Norelli outlined a package that would use the Senate’s language for expansion, but changes how and when individuals would access private insurance.

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Health
6:47 pm
Tue November 12, 2013

Advocates Push For Medicaid Expansion During Public Hearings

Senate President Chuck Morse prepares to give testimony during a public hearing on Medicaid expansion.
Credit Todd Bookman / NHPR

On Tuesday, both the House and Senate held public hearings on competing Medicaid expansion bills. 

Supporters of growing the health program pulled out the same blue stickers they’ve worn at other recent public hearings. And many of the voices were the same, including doctors, nurses, advocates and citizens who shared stories about how access to health insurance would benefit low-income New Hampshire residents.

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NH News
12:08 pm
Sun November 10, 2013

N.H. House and Senate To Hash Out Separate Medicaid Expansion Plans

House and Senate committees are holding public hearings and work sessions on rival plans to expand Medicaid in New Hampshire this week.   The House holds its public hearing Tuesday morning while the Senate's hearing on its plan is that afternoon. The committees working on the bills will vote on a recommendation Thursday, but whatever they decide may be superseded by any compromise negotiated behind closed doors by legislative leaders and Gov. Maggie Hassan.   The House and Senate plans are essentially the same for the first year, but take different approaches after that.

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Health
6:06 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

On Expansion, Lawmakers Have Two Weeks To Reconcile Two Competing Plans

Credit Ben McLeod / Flickr Creative Commons

  Lawmakers returned to Concord Thursday to debate a major part of the federal health overhaul law: expansion of Medicaid. In New Hampshire, such a move would provide insurance coverage to an estimated 50,000 low income residents.

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Health
5:30 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Legislature Gears Up For Medicaid Session, With No Deal Yet Announced

For the next two weeks, lawmakers will be in Concord to discuss Medicaid expansion, including an up-or-down vote. Governor Maggie Hassan says she’s open to ideas for how to expand the health program, but wants to make sure any final plan works for the state.

Hassan and leaders of both parties have been meeting privately to discuss ways to expand Medicaid, but as of yet haven’t hinted at a deal.

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Politics
9:39 am
Mon November 4, 2013

On The Political Front For November 4

After the commission's recommendation last month, lawmakers will be debating expanding Medicaid in a special legislative session called by Governor Hassan; it remains to be seen how much bipartisan support the measure will have. We'll be watching the mayor's race in Manchester, where incumbent Mayor Ted Gatsas is being challenged by Alderman Patrick Arnold, and a special House election in Nashua, which pits former House Majority Leader Peter Silva against Democrat Latha Mangipudi.

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Health
5:09 pm
Wed October 30, 2013

Critics Take Aim At Medicaid Expansion In New Hampshire

Conservative activists are warning lawmakers that an expansion of the state’s Medicaid program would lead to a fiscal crisis in New Hampshire.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Wed October 23, 2013

A Medicaid Expansion Update

Credit Passive Income Dream.com / Flickr Creative Commons

The special commission that debated New Hampshire options all summer has made its report.  Two members of that commission talk with us about what happened, why, and where we go from here.

GUESTS:

  • Cindy Rosenwald – five-term Democratic representative from Nashua and a member of the finance committee
  • Charlie Arlinghaus -  president of the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy, a free-market think tank based in Concord.
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Health
4:42 pm
Tue October 15, 2013

Commission Finalizes Plan That Supports Medicaid Expansion In N.H.

Senator Nancy Stiles working with a consultant on the final version of the Medicaid Expansion Commission report.
Credit Todd Bookman / NHPR

Brushing up against its October 15th deadline, on Tuesday a special commission studying a possible expansion of Medicaid in New Hampshire finalized its recommendations.

This was the final meeting of a nine-member group that spent the summer debating if and how to expand Medicaid to more low income residents.

While the issue still proves divisive, the commission did find common ground accepting the contents of the final report, voting unanimously to send it to the Governor and legislative leaders.

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Health
10:06 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

Medicaid Expansion Plan Approved By Commission

New Hampshire is one of just a handful of states that hasn’t yet answered the Medicaid expansion question. Remember, when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on the federal health law last summer, it said Washington could not force states to expand their  Medicaid programs that provides health care to the poor. States, instead, must be given a choice.

And so, for the better part of three months now, a special commission has been studying whether to add 50,000 more low income individuals to the program.

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Health
6:57 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Medicaid Commission To Vote Next Week On Recommendation

Members of the special commission studying whether to expand Medicaid in New Hampshire continue to hash out their differences in the face of a looming deadline.

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On the Political Front
12:00 pm
Mon September 30, 2013

On The Political Front For Monday, Sept. 30

    

On the Political Front this morning, NHPR's Josh Rogers talks with Morning Edition host Rick Ganley about the state of Medicaid expansion in New Hampshire and how the race is shaping up in the 1st Congressional District.

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NH News
5:07 pm
Tue September 24, 2013

Hassan To Lawmakers: Act Quickly On Medicaid Expansion Report

As a study commission nears its deadline to issue its findings on whether to expand Medicaid, Governor Maggie Hassan is urging lawmakers to take swift action once that report is released.

Speaking to members of the Nashua Rotary West Club on Tuesday, Hassan, who supports expansion, says the state can’t afford to wait.

“For every day that we delay expansion beyond Jan. 1, even conservative projections show that New Hampshire stands to lose $500,000 per day in the first year, and up to $1 million per day by 2016.”

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Health
2:17 pm
Thu September 12, 2013

Democrats Say Alternative Plan To Medicaid Expansion 'Makes No Sense'

Sylvia Larsen, appearing on the Exchange in 2011

Democratic lawmakers are criticizing a Republican-backed alternative plan to Medicaid expansion in New Hampshire. 

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Health
5:57 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

Study Commission Hears Competing Plan For Possible Expansion

Avik Roy presents before the commission studying a possible Medicaid expansion in New Hampshire.
Credit Todd Bookman / NHPR

The star attraction this week at the special 9-member commission studying a possible expansion of the state's Medicaid program was Avik Roy, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and popular conservative blogger with Forbes.com.

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Wed August 21, 2013

A Conversation With Commissioner Toumpas

Whether it’s the debate over expanding Medicaid or the struggle to improve mental health services, his department has seen its share of challenges lately, but did receive a bit of a boost in the last budget.  We’ll talk with the commissioner about all this, and  controversy over the state’s Medicaid managed care plan.

Guest:

- Nick Toumpas - Commissioner for the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services

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The Exchange
9:00 am
Tue August 13, 2013

Mulling Over Medicaid Expansion

At the end of the legislative season, New Hampshire lawmakers decided to spend the summer studying whether the Granite State should accept or reject federal funds to extend Medicaid to more residents.  A special committee has held weekly sessions on this, with a deadline of mid-October.  We’ll find out what they’re looking at and what they may decide. 

Guests

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Health
9:42 am
Mon August 12, 2013

Potential Doctor Shortage Could Impact Medicaid Expansion Decision

If you’ve got health insurance, you know it can be hard to get a routine doctor’s appointment.

Representative Neal Kurk (R-Weare), who sits on the commission studying a possible Medicaid expansion, worries it could get harder.

“As a public official, will I start getting calls from my constituents saying, I had to wait another seven weeks for my doctor’s appointment? My operation took much longer on the left hip that it did on the right hip,” says Kurk.

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Health
6:19 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

Medicaid Expansion Commission Weighs Alternative Plans For New Hampshire

The commission tasked with deciding if New Hampshire should expand its Medicaid program heard from a panel of experts Tuesday.

Speakers from the National Conference of State Legislatures and National Governors Association were in Concord to discuss options for Medicaid expansion, and to detail what other states are pursuing.

NHPR Health reporter Todd Bookman sits down with All Things Considered Host Brady Carlson to recap the hearing.

 

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Health
3:42 pm
Tue July 30, 2013

Insurance Department Makes Case For Medicaid Expansion

Tyler Brannen, Jennifer Patterson and Alex Feldvebel of the N.H. Insurance Department testify before the commission considering Medicaid expansion.
Credit Todd Bookman / NHPR

The New Hampshire Insurance Department took an overwhelmingly positive view on expansion during its presentation to the Medicaid Expansion Study Commission, the body that will decide if the state grows the health care program for the poor under so-called Obamacare.

Department officials told the nine-member body that expansion would benefit a wide range of groups, including insurance companies, hospitals and employers with low-paid workers.

Tyler Brannen, a health policy analyst with the Department, testified that people who buy their own insurance also stand to gain.

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Health
1:10 pm
Mon July 8, 2013

Special Medicaid Commission Gets To Work

A special commission looking into a possible expansion of the state’s Medicaid program met Monday for the first time.

The body consists of nine voting members, including five Democratic appointees and four by Republicans.

They put partisanship aside during the first meeting, unanimously selecting Jim Varnum to chair the group. He was tapped to serve by Governor Hassan after leading Mary Hitchcock Memorial Hospital for nearly three decades.

“I appreciate the opportunity and the confidence you have,” says Varnum. “This is such an important task for all of us.”

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Health
1:14 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Final Members Named To Medicaid Expansion Committee

The final four members have been named to the state's Medicaid Expansion study committee.

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Health
5:09 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Quirk In Health Law Creates 'Coverage Canyon'

Credit istock photo

At 60-years old, Wendy Rogers considers herself lucky. She’s healthy, her kids are grown. There’s just one thing that gets her down: health insurance.

“I really don’t let myself think about it, because it overwhelms me.”

Rogers lives in Franklin, in a tidy apartment decorated with framed photos of friends and family. She lost her insurance three years ago, after getting laid off from a local school district  where she was a kindergarten aide. Now she works part time at a child-care center.

Rogers says she relies on family for medical expenses.

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Health
5:59 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Medicaid Expansion Left Out Of Next State Budget

Credit Todd Bookman / NHPR

    

The heavy lifting on the state’s next two year budget wrapped up a little past 3 a.m. Thursday. So when the two sides gathered less than twelve hours later to make it official, House budget leader Mary Jane Wallner was happy to call it a day.

“That’s it. I think we’re done. We’re adjourned!”

But despite that celebratory flourish, lawmakers are far from done when it comes to Medicaid.

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Health
10:08 pm
Tue June 18, 2013

House and Senate Each Offer Deal On Expansion, But No Compromise In Sight

Leaders in the Democratically-controlled New Hampshire House are seeking to cut a deal with Senate Republicans that would expand the state’s Medicaid program.  But hours after receiving the proposal Tuesday, members of the upper chamber said they can’t move forward with the plan, and offered their own course of action.

Medicaid expansion remains a key sticking point as lawmakers seek to finalize the state’s next budget by Thursday’s deadline.

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Health
5:03 pm
Thu June 13, 2013

Federal Government Confirms State Could Drop Medicaid Expansion At Any Time

New Hampshire can withdraw from an expanded Medicaid program at any time, according to a letter received Thursday from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, or CMS.

The letter comes as legislative negotiators are poised to meet to finalize the state’s budget.

A point of impasse between the Democratically-held house and Republican-controlled Senate has been an expansion of the state’s Medicaid program.

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Health
5:47 pm
Tue June 11, 2013

Planned Parenthood Joins Fight Over Medicaid Expansion

Dr. Becky Ewing, NH March of Dimes Program Services Committee member, speaks at the event in Concord.
Credit Todd Bookman / NHPR

 Women’s health advocates took to the statehouse today, calling for an expansion of the state’s Medicaid program under the Affordable Care Act. The issue remains a sticking point as lawmakers work to finalize the state’s budget.

Planned Parenthood’s Jennifer Frizzell estimates that 61% of those able to sign up for an expanded Medicaid program are women, and she accuses GOP lawmakers of being oblivious to what they want.

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Health
4:53 pm
Tue June 4, 2013

Hassan Calls Medicaid Expansion 'A Good Deal' For The State

Credit Todd Bookman / NHPR

Supporters of Medicaid expansion filled the lobby of the Legislative Office Building in Concord for a mid-morning press conference. The show of force comes in advance of Thursday’s budget vote in the Senate.

Flanked by reform advocates, hospitals administrators and doctors, Governor Hassan pressed lawmakers to take advantage of the federal government’s promise to pay 100% of the costs of expansion for the first three years.

She quoted New Jersey Republican Governor Chris Christie, who supports expansion and says it will save money for taxpayers in his state.

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