Editorial roundup

The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer, Oct. 21

New research indicates that the Affordable Care Act and other health policy developments in Ohio have cut in half the proportion of Ohioans without health care insurance. The Plain Dealer, citing Ohio Department of Medicaid survey findings, recently reported that the percentage of uncovered Ohioans is about 8.7 percent. The proportion was about 17.3 percent in 2012.

Demonstrably, one key reason for that positive development is the expansion of Ohio’s Medicaid program by Republican Gov. John Kasich. The federal Affordable Care Act, so-called Obamacare, authorized Medicaid expansion in those states that opted for it. To date, 30 states, including Ohio and every state that borders Ohio, have done so …

That, among other things, means that Ohio and other states must shrewdly manage Medicaid spending inside their borders. And on that front, there’s also good news. Gongwer News Service, citing data from the state Budget Office, which is part of Kasich’s administration, and from the legislature’s nonpartisan research arm, the Legislative Service Commission, has reported that “underspending in Medicaid … appears to be on a continuing path.” That is, Ohio’s Medicaid managers are watching the store, a good omen for when Ohio will be shouldering some expansion costs.

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