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John Kasich

Medicaid proposal by Gov. Kasich would transform system

John Kasich 41%

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If Gov. John Kasich's budget proposal passes, the state's heavily used Medicaid system will undisputedly undergo a transformation.

More than 2 million Ohioans are now enrolled in Medicaid, the government's health insurance for the poor. The system has grown so much -- particularly during the recent recession -- that it now pays for two out of every five births in the state.

At the same time, it has become a system that provides little care coordination for the people who are enrolled and little accountability for how money is spent, said Greg Moody, director of Kasich's Office of Health Transformation, which engineered the massive overhaul proposal.

"Its going to be a culture change," Moody said, adding that he believes the new system will serve the interests of the people who use Medicaid as well as the taxpayers who support it.

Moody aims for a drastic overhaul of how the health care system works.

"We are hoping it changes business for the better," he said.

Nationwide, states are trying to curb spending on Medicaid -- often one of the most expensive parts of their budgets. To tackle rising costs, states have made across-the-board cuts in payments to hospitals, doctors and other health care providers. They've also proposed slashing benefits such as vision and dental care, says Melissa Hansen, a health policy specialist for the National Conference on State Legislatures.

This is something Ohio has chosen not to do. What distinguishes Ohio's proposal is this: The state's plan cuts funding in some areas and spends . ore in others.





Source: blog.cleveland.com

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