Medicaid Teach In & Lobby Day
Start: Monday, February 09, 2015•10:00 AM
Monday, February 9, 2015 will kick off our Medicaid Expansion Fight! Who do we need to target for lobbying? What will lobbying look like for Medicaid expansion?
On Monday we will have experts on Medicaid expansion share with us crucial information on how we should address this with our legislators. This teach in will start promptly at 11:00 am and we ask everyone to come at 10:00 am to fellowship with fellow Georgians. After the Teach In we will speak to key legislators at the Georgia Capitol beginning at 1:00 pm. We will be closing out the day with a bold action showing our support for Medicaid Expansion at 2:00 pm.
It is urgent that we get all participation. Can you make it?
Money Wasted by Georgia Lawmakers Who Refuse to
Close the Coverage Gap
As the Georgia legislature kicks into full swing, the Cover Georgia Coalition, ProGeorgia, and partner organizations including Coalition for the People’s Agenda, Moral Monday, Domestic Workers Alliance – Atlanta, Feminist Women’s Health Center, Georgia Equality, Georgia NAACP, Georgia WAND, League of Women Voters of Georgia, Planned Parenthood Southeast, Spark! Reproductive Justice, and We Vote. We Rise. have launched a billboard campaign on the Connector to bring attention to the fact that our state loses over $8 million every day that Georgia lawmakers refuse to close Georgia’s coverage. The Georgia Medicaid program now covers 1.7 million people. Changes to eligibility, an important element of ensuring coverage for as many people as possible, would allow an additional 500,000 Georgians access to the program.
Currently in Georgia, Medicaid does not cover low-income childless adults, and only covers working parents who make less than 40% Federal Poverty Level or approximately $7,612 a year for a family of three. Under the Affordable Care Act, Georgia has the option of expanding its Medicaid program to all adults who make up to 138% FPL, approximately $16,242 a year for an individual. In Georgia, about 500,000 people would gain health coverage under this expansion. Of these 500,000 people, most are working adults who do not have coverage through their jobs.
Georgia ranks among the bottom of all states when it comes to access to health coverage. Nearly 2 million Georgians lack health coverage, which is nearly 20 percent of the state's residents. More than one-quarter of Georgians between 18-64 lack health coverage and that figure is even higher for adults at or near poverty. If Georgia doesn't close the coverage gap, many of these Georgians will remain uncovered and will continue to receive sporadic care at free clinics or turn to emergency rooms when their health problems become more severe.
Under the Medicaid expansion, the federal government will cover 100% of the costs of expansion through the end of 2016. In 2017, the federal government will cover 95% of the costs for this expanded population and will phase down to 90% in 2020. These percentages are written into the Affordable Care Act, and cannot be changed without an act of Congress.
This expansion will bring in $14 billion to Georgia over the course of the first five years that would go to providers, nurses, and hospitals. This investment would boost Georgia’s economy, generating jobs and new tax revenue. The state would spend $714 million over the first six years, an increase of 2% over what it normally spends on Medicaid. Georgia has already lost over $3 billion in funding by refusing to close the coverage gap.