Why Medicaid expansion will hurt Utah’s most vulnerable

A new analysis by Jonathan Ingram of the Foundation for Government Accountability and Derek Monson of Sutherland Institute explains why Utah should opt out of Medicaid expansion:

Utah’s Medicaid expansion plans put the state’s truly needy citizens at great risk. It is important to remember who would actually qualify for Utah’s Medicaid expansion. The Medicaid expansion does not cover the elderly, individuals with disabilities or even poor children–groups considered among the most vulnerable. Instead, Utah’s plan simply expands Medicaid eligibility to a new class of able-bodied, working-age adults. …

This will ultimately create a two-tiered system of care, where able-bodied adults are prioritized over the truly needy.

The paper, An Analysis of Utah’s Proposed Medicaid Expansion, goes on to explain that Medicaid expansion will crowd out private insurance and create a lot of budgeting uncertainty.

At a time when policymakers are concerned with rebuilding Utah’s cash reserves and paying down existing state debt, creating a new entitlement for able-bodied adults is a significant risk when there is no reliable way to project how much the expansion will actually cost.

Click here to read the full paper.