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Governor wants more residents to be eligible for Medicaid - KOAM TV 7

Missouri governor wants more residents to be eligible for Medicaid

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Missouri Governor Jay Nixon tours the state with a plan to put an expansion of Medicaid into his budget proposal.

The governor says 300,000 more Missourians would be eligible for Medicaid under the plan.

Access Family Care sees many Medicaid patients, but more would qualify if the eligibility level is raised to 138% of the federal poverty level.

Access and Freeman Hospital say many more patients are still completely uninsured.

Freeman says uninsured treatment cost $23 million last year.

Federal funding would pay for the expansion the first three years and more medical jobs would be created.

"The path we choose will affect the health care of hundreds of thousands of Missourians and the future of our economy," says Governor Jay Nixon.

"This expansion to Medicaid is anticipated to create 24,000 additional jobs in Missouri and bring $8 billion to the state economy over a period of years, so it's very robust to the state's economy," says Paula Baker, CEO of Freeman Health Systems.

Baker says Freeman would recruit physicians, registered nurses, and nurse practitioners to serve patients able to get preventative care under the expansion.

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