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Proposal May Drastically Limit Medicaid
June 3, 2003

The National Governors Association (NGA) has been working to respond to the Bush Administration’s proposal to provide states with the option to accept a block grant for Medicaid and to cap its funding. The NGA’s Medicaid Task Force, the group established to address this issue, is writing a proposal for congress to give governors more flexibility in the Medicaid program by capping funding and changing the program into a block grant. Many advocacy organizations have expressed their concerns about the Bush proposal and are concerned that the NGA proposal won’t do enough to protect services for Medicaid recipients.

The NGA Medicaid Task Force is comprised of five Republican governors and five Democratic governors from KY, ID, FL, IN, CT, IA, MD, ND, and NM. Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell is not on this task force. All governors will vote on the final proposal to support a cap on the federal funding for Medicaid by June 10.

As work continues toward restoration of state drug & alcohol and mental health funds, members must also be aware of federal initiatives that may impact future budgets and, therefore, future services to people in need. Providers are encouraged to contact Governor Rendell to urge him to oppose any proposal that would impose a federal funding cap on Medicaid, effectively causing many beneficiaries to lose their comprehensive Medicaid benefits package. When contacting the governor remember to express support for restoring drug and alcohol and mental health funds. Governor Rendell may be reached at 717-787-2500.

For more information regarding Medicaid Reform, contact Rebecca May Cole at the Association.

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