Wolf, Casey call on Senate Republicans to save Medicaid

Written by Rachel McDevitt | Jun 15, 2017 6:21 PM

Photo by AP Photo/Matt Rourke

(Harrisburg) -- Governor Tom Wolf joined Pennsylvania's Democratic U.S. Senator on a conference call with reporters Thursday to urge Senate Republicans to protect Medicaid in their healthcare bill.

A small group of Republican Senators has been working secretively on a replacement bill to the Affordable Care Act. Health care advocates are hoping that bill will be less severe than the one passed by the House, which would cut $800 billion from Medicaid over the next decade.

However, Senator Casey says he's hearing from Republican colleagues that the Senate version of the bill matches the House version 80 percent.

"In fact, there's some concern that the Senate bill will have deeper cuts when it comes to Medicaid per capita cap," Casey said.

Governor Wolf said Pennsylvania stands to lose a lot if Medicaid is cut dramatically.

"Medicaid pays for substance use disorder treatment," Wolf said, "That goes away if the Senate plan looks anything like the House plan. And 85,000 Pennsylvanians could lose their jobs over the next decade in the health care industry."

Wolf said he has written to Pennsylvania's Republican U.S. Senator Pat Toomey, talked to him on the phone, and met with him in Washington to explain his concerns over the health care bill. Wolf said he still hasn't gotten a response on what exactly will be in the bill.

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