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Yard signs have been out in yards in west central Missouri:

“I Support Medicaid Expansion”

That would be almost everyone except for the right wingnut majority in the Missouri General Assembly.

Here’s why there’s no Medicaid expansion for Missouri

May 15

By BARBARA SHELLY

The Kansas City Star

Missouri had a path to Medicaid expansion this year

The governor and the state’s leading business groups wanted it. All of the legislature’s Democrats and a growing number of Republicans supported it. Retired U.S. Sen. Kit Bond, a Republican, lobbied tirelessly for it.

Barring an end-of-session miracle before 6 p.m. Friday, however, Missouri will not expand Medicaid eligibility this year. Nearly 300,000 working adults will spend another year locked out of access to affordable health care because their income level places them in a coverage gap.

Standing in the path of Medicaid expansion are a few self-righteous men in the Missouri Senate….

Letters to the Editor

May 07, 2014 12:00 am

Failing to expand Medicaid damages our public health systems

….When I arrived as the director of Health and Hospitals around 1990, not one nickel of our city dollars had ever been matched with federal Medicaid dollars. Over that 25-year period from 1965 to 1990, the state of Missouri left millions of dollars on the table because our local and state politicians either did not read or simply did not act on Medicaid law. The cash value of this inaction is calculable. However, more importantly, taking a pass on this opportunity has cost some of our fellow citizens their lives by damaging our community’s ability to develop more robust public health and health care systems that better meets the needs of our population.

Our state politicians are once again failing to act on national legislation (in this case the Affordable Care Act), which would bring federal Medicaid dollars to our state for both the urban and rural poor. This time around, no state match is needed for the first three years because the expansion of Medicaid to those at 138 percent of poverty level will simply bring our tax dollars back home to Missouri.

Failing to fully expand Medicaid will cause some hospitals and clinics to curtail services, and some will close. This time around the entire state will be affected. Some Missourians will lose their lives, and we will damage our public health and medical care systems.

Dr. William L. Kincaid  •  St. Louis

Former director of Health and Hospitals, city of St. Louis

“….Failing to fully expand Medicaid will cause some hospitals and clinics to curtail services, and some will close. This time around the entire state will be affected. Some Missourians will lose their lives, and we will damage our public health and medical care systems.”

A sign of our current time, for sure.