Governor Kelly Participates in Health Care Accessibility Town Hall with the Kansas Health Foundation

Yesterday, Governor Laura Kelly participated in the “Accessible Health Care Coverage for Kansans” town hall in Wichita, hosted by the Kansas Health Foundation (KHF). Governor Kelly and Ed O’Malley, KHF President and CEO, discussed Medicaid expansion and engaged with Wichita-area business owners, community leaders, and audience members about the impact expanding Medicaid would have on Kansas. 

“On my ‘Healthy Workers, Healthy Economy’ tour, I have emphasized how increasing access to health care coverage would have ripple effects across Kansas,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “We know that Medicaid expansion will support our rural hospitals, strengthen our health care workforce, and benefit law enforcement, small businesses, and local taxpayers. Senators should vote yes on the motion to debate and vote on Medicaid expansion on Friday to empower these communities.”

Expanding Medicaid will provide 150,000 Kansans access to affordable health care coverage. Additionally, expansion is estimated to create an additional 23,000 jobs, address our health care worker shortage, and inject more than $1 billion annually into our hospitals and health centers.

“It’s critical we continue having open dialogue to find solutions that truly work for the people of this state,” said Ed O’Malley, President and CEOof the Kansas Health Foundation. “Limited access to affordable health care is a problem for hundreds of thousands of Kansans across the state. Medicaid expansion addresses this issue by reducing health care costs for everyone and increasing eligibility so more Kansans can get covered.”

The town hall comes the same week the Kansas Legislature returns to the Statehouse. On Friday, April 26, Senators will vote on the motion made by Senate Democratic Leader Dinah Sykes to move Governor Kelly’s Medicaid expansion bill out of the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee and onto the floor.

Kansas House Speaker Dan Hawkins and Senate President Ty Masterson were invited to participate in the town hall but declined. Other legislative leaders and legislators representing Sedgwick County were invited to attend the town hall.

Kansans can find contact information to ask their legislator to support Medicaid expansion here.   

Photos from yesterday’s event for media use are available below: