Originally published on Thu March 27, 2014 10:51 pm
For years in most states, Medicaid eligibility had been limited to disabled adults, seniors needing long-term care and very low-income parents with their children.
Then along came the Affordable Care Act. It was designed to grow health insurance coverage across the board. One of its tenets was to expand Medicaid coverage beyond the extremely poor and disabled to include all adults earning up to 138 percent of federal poverty levels.
But in 2012, the Supreme Court gave states the chance to opt out Medicaid expansion.
Governor Terry Branstad (R-Iowa) says he will seek a key provision in future contracts with union employees.
Branstad and Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds (R-Iowa) say they will start paying 20% of their health insurance premiums next month.
The Governor told a crowd in Fort Madison that Iowa could save $100-million if every state employee followed their lead.
“But I don’t expect a lot of rank-and-file workers will do it immediately,” says Branstad, “but down the road, most people in the private sector are paying more than that so we think in the future that makes sense.”
The Supreme Court ruled today that the 2010 Affordable Care Act is constitutional — giving the Obama administration a big election year win over conservative critics who argue that the health care overhaul is a step on the way toward socialized medicine.