ICYMI: Governor Kelly Kicks Off Healthy Workers, Healthy Economy Tour to Push for Medicaid Expansion: Here’s What They’re Saying

“Expanding Medicaid and ensuring that every Kansan has access to affordable, high-quality health care is the smartest, sanest way to keep our state moving forward,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “When the legislature reconvenes in January, I will propose Medicaid expansion for the sixth time so Kansas can achieve a healthier workforce and a healthier economy. I encourage every Kansan to call their legislator and tell them to demand that legislative leadership give them a chance to vote for Medicaid expansion.” 

Gov. Kelly: ‘We’re shooting ourselves in the foot’ by not expanding Medicaid
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Governor Laura Kelly reignites Kansas Medicaid expansion battle on statewide tour
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‘I refuse to give up on this fight:’ Laura Kelly reignites battle over Medicaid expansion
09.20.23 | KAKE 

Kansas governor takes another push at Medicaid expansion
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Governor Kelly launches statewide tour to support Medicaid Expansion
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Kelly launches statewide tour to push for Medicaid expansion
09.20.23 | State Affairs   

What They’re Saying:

“Health Forward Foundation stands with the vast majority of Kansans — regardless of their political leanings — who want their communities to be as healthy as possible. Expanding KanCare is the right thing to do for all Kansans as we work to address the deep health and economic injustices in our rural communities that come with the ever-present danger of hospital closures and our urban areas where costs often exceed discretionary income. It’s on all of us to speak up, contact our legislators, and use our collective voice to build the Kansas we deserve.”
-McClain Bryant Macklin, Health Forward Foundation Vice President of Policy and Impact 

“As followers of Jesus, one of the most universal missions we practice is healing the sick. Access to health care through the expansion of KanCare is a holy and Christ-like act. We urge lawmakers to do whatever it takes to make this expansion happen as soon as possible.”
-Pastor Charles McKinzie, Clergy, Great Plains Conference of the United Methodist Church 

“American Heart Association research shows that closing the insurance coverage gap is crucial to accessing needed preventative and cardiac-related care.  Kansans know this, too. Kansas heart mom and low wage worker, Melissa Dodge, has lived most of the past few years uninsured, making too much to qualify for Medicaid and not enough to qualify for a marketplace plan. Closing the gap would help Melissa to stay healthy while caring for her family of four.”
-American Heart Association 

“At the United Methodist Health Ministry Fund, expanding Medicaid remains a top priority of ours because we recognize that expanding Medicaid is critical to lowering health care costs in Kansas and reducing medical debt, protecting rural hospitals in danger of closing and growing our workforce to ensure our communities can continue to thrive. Expanding Medicaid is not a partisan issue nearly 80% of Kansans support Medicaid expansionit is a commonsense policy solution that will benefit all Kansans and improve the state’s finances. With a growing number of uninsured Kansans (higher than the national average for the second straight year), more financially vulnerable hospitals in Kansas than in any other state, and a growing number of health care workers being recruited to neighboring states that expanded Medicaid, we cannot afford to wait any longer to expand Medicaid.”
-David Jordan, President and CEO, United Methodist Health Ministry Fund 

“The benefits of KanCare expansion are clear. It reduces health care costs for everyone by reducing uncompensated care in hospitals. It protects Kansans from medical debt, which is the most common cause for bankruptcy in the U.S. It helps ensure uniform access to health care for all Kansans, regardless of their race, how much money they make, or their ZIP code. And as Governor Kelly emphasized, it supports a healthier workforce and keeps Kansas economically competitive, and is a critical step in preserving and strengthening our rural health care system.”
-April Holman, Executive Director, Alliance for a Healthy Kansas 

“The Kansas Commission on Disability Concerns (KCDC) supports Medicaid Expansion.  In addition to the Governor’s statistics about the uninsured, significant numbers of adults with disabilities on Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) do not meet the income eligibility requirement for Medicaid. They need health care too.”
-Kansas Commission on Disability Concerns 

“REACH Healthcare Foundation has long advocated for giving low-wage adults an affordable option for health coverage–recognizing workers can’t stay healthy or protect their families without health care. Kansas is one of 10 states that hasn’t accepted the federal support to cover 90% of the cost. Our neighboring states have moved forward. Kansans are ready.”
-REACH Healthcare Foundation 

“The Kansas Health Foundation (KHF) continues to support Medicaid expansion. Thousands of hard-working Kansans do not have access to affordable health care coverage. They are not faceless people. They are Kansans who contribute to our communities and economy. They are our neighbors who wake up every day and do everything within their power to achieve a dignified, fulfilling life. Over the last several decades, Kansas has fallen further behind in national health rankings. Expanding Medicaid is an obvious and necessary choice for closing the health care coverage gap and further bolstering our growing economy. We must act immediately to help return the Sunflower State to the ranks of one of America’s healthiest places to live.”
-Ed O’Malley, President and CEO, Kansas Health Foundation 

“Our hospitals continue to look for ways to sustain their ability to serve Kansas patients. We hear from hospitals that stretching scarce resources is harder than ever right now. We look forward to working to find ways, including expanding Medicaid, to create a more stable climate for our Kansas communities, businesses, and patients to be able to continue to receive the right care at the right time when they need it throughout our state”
-Chad Austin, CEO, Kansas Hospital Association