TOPEKA – Today, Governor Laura Kelly sent a letter to Congressional leadership urging Congress to pass legislation that would create a Medicaid expansion work-around in non-expansion states.

“Kansas is one of twelve states that has failed to expand Medicaid, and this political obstruction has prevented 165,000 Kansans from accessing quality, affordable health care,” said Governor Laura Kelly. “My administration will continue to fight for Medicaid expansion at the state level, but until then, this federal legislation will allow us to bypass the self-destructive politics pushed by the Republican leaders in the statehouse and bring resources, jobs, and life-saving health care to our state.”

Passing H.R. 4595, the Medicaid Saves Lives Act, or including similar provisions in the pending budget and reconciliation process, would allow eligible residents of non-expansion states like Kansas to access full Medicaid coverage at no additional cost to states or the federal government. Additionally, this legislation would increase federal medical assistance percentages by ten percent for states that expand Medicaid, providing states like Kansas ten years to access full funding if they choose to expand Medicaid at the state level.

Currently, Kansas is one of twelve states that has failed to expand Medicaid – despite overwhelming public approval and the predicted economic benefits, including:

  • Adding nearly 23,000 new jobs in the state of Kansas;
  • Creating $17 billion in economic output through 2025;
  • Raising personal income by $6.3 billion; and
  • Saving private-sector employers up to $80.6 million.

Additionally, Medicaid expansion in Kansas would:

  • Provide affordable health care to 165,000 Kansans who currently fall into a health coverage gap - including 7,400 veterans and their spouses;
  • Support Kansas’ rural hospitals and communities; and
  • Enhance services for mental health and substance use disorders.

“The Medicaid Saves Lives Act is the chance Kansans have been waiting for. It’s the right thing to do to support our people, our communities, and our economy,” said Governor Laura Kelly.

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