Kansas sees new push after report shows Medicaid expansion saves state businesses’ money

Capitol Bureau

TOPEKA (KSNT) — The Alliance for a Healthy Kansas held a virtual meeting Wednesday to go over key findings from a Kansas Health Institute report.

The report shows that private-sector employers would save between $39.6 million and $80.6 million a year if the state opted into Medicaid expansion. April Holman, executive director of the Alliance for a Healthy Kansas, led the meeting joined by Brad Stratton, president of Overland Park Wealth Management, who shared a business perspective on expansion. 

“I saw an immediate financial impact, as well as the healthcare benefits to the state were so evident from the beginning, and from my investment perspective, I laughingly said this is a rare example of an easy decision when it comes to return on investment,” Stratton said.

Currently, Kansas is one of 12 states that have not opted into Medicaid expansion. Opponents in the legislature have argued that it’s an investment that the state can’t afford.

While efforts have been made by Governor Laura Kelly’s administration to push legislation to expand Medicaid this year, there’s no word on whether lawmakers will move forward on the proposals.

The Alliance for a Healthy Kansas said the key findings in the KHI report were as follows:

  • Medicaid expansion is projected to save Kansas businesses between $39.6 million and $80.6 million per year.
  • Medicaid expansion is tied to improved health, improved self-reported ability to work and minimal impacts to the overall labor market.
  • Nearly all Kansas industries employ Kansans who would be eligible for Medicaid if expanded. The occupations with the highest number of people eligible for coverage under Medicaid expansion provide front-line services that are instrumental to the success of their employers’ businesses. 

Click here to access the full report.

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