Gov. John Kasich included a Medicaid expansion plan in his 2014-2015 state budget proposal but House conservatives removed it.
Medicaid is a state and federally funded health care plan that covers 2.3 million low-income and disabled Ohioans, costs $19.8 billion a year, is the largest payer of nursing home care in the state and pays for 45 percent of the births in Ohio.
Expanding Medicaid eligibility up to 138 percent of the federal poverty line is a key element of the federal health care law. The federal government will pay 100 percent of states’ costs of newly eligible enrollees for three years, and then eventually dial it back to 90 percent. An expanded Medicaid program would bring in $13 billion in federal money over seven years to Ohio.
Medicaid bills are pending in both the House and Senate but lawmakers are currently on summer break.