Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment. Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.
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Host: Scott LaMar
Radio Smart Talk for Wednesday, March 13:
One of the top aims of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is to provide health insurance to those who are currently uninsured.
Under the ACA, the federal government would fund the expansion of Medicaid programs on the state level. Washington would pick up 100% of the cost for the first three years and 90% after that. However, as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on the ACA last year, states could opt out by deciding not to accept the federal money.
So far, 24 states have agreed to take the funding, including eight states with Republican governors who opposed the ACA in the first place.
At this point, Pennsylvania governor Tom Corbett has decided not to accept the Medicaid money, saying he wants assurances that Pennsylvania taxpayers won't be left on the hook. Corbett says he will meet with U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius soon to discuss whether accepting the money could fall back on the state.
The Pennsylvania Health Access Network, which advocates for the Affordable Care Act, says Corbett is missing out on $43.3 billion in new Medicaid funds over the next 10 years that would provide insurance to half of the uninsured in Pennsylvania.
PHAN Director Antionette Kraus will appear on Wednesday's Radio Smart Talk to make the case.
PHAN Director Antionette Kraus
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