Texas Public Policy Foundation’s David Guenthner Says Medicaid and Budget Will Be Major Issues This Week [AUDIO]
On the Tuesday edition of The Chad Hasty Show, David Guenthner from the Texas Public Policy Foundation talked with Chad Hasty about the latest coming out of the Texas legislative session.
This week, the big issues for the legislature will be the budget and Medicaid expansion. Republicans, particularly Texas governor Rick Perry, have been under much pressure to approve expansions for Medicaid in the state. However, Guenthner said the Republicans will stick to their guns and continue to reject the idea of Medicaid expansion. He went on to explain that the Medicaid program already has too many patients and not enough care providers, and further expansion of Medicaid would only result in the program collapsing on itself.
"The problems with Medicaid are that you don't have the provider networks to be able to support the number of patients that we have today, and we're going to increase the clients by fifty percent? I mean, the only place you're going to have any flexibility in the Medicaid program is by cutting provider rates, and that's why you don't have as many physicians taking Medicaid patients anymore. And what you're going to have is a situation where if you put these million five, million seven additional people into Medicaid, which is what the long term projection is, then it's just going to collapse access to health care, and the providers who do take Medicaid patients aren't going to be able to afford to stay in business."
The budget will be another big issue as it hits the House floor on Thursday. Guenthner expects Thursday to be very long day in the House, but is confident that the budget will pass, as it it the only "must pass" bill this session.
Throughout the Texas legislative session, you can listen to David Guenthner Tuesdays at 9:05 during The Chad Hasty Show on NewsTalk 790 KFYO. For more information on the Texas Public Policy Foundation, visit their website at texaspolicy.com. You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter @TPPF.