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Health

Kansas Silver Haired Legislature Wants Medicaid Expansion

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Stephen Koranda
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Members of the Silver Haired Legislature meeting in Topeka.

An advocacy group for Kansans over 60 will continue to push for Medicaid expansion. 

The Silver Haired Legislature targeted expanding Medicaid as a goal for the next Kansas legislative session.

Don Woodard, one of the group’s leaders, says there are thousands of Kansans between the ages of 60 and 65 who fall into a coverage gap. They aren’t old enough to qualify for Medicare, but they make too much to qualify for Medicaid right now.

“Some of them are working, but they don’t make enough to pay for their own insurance coverage. They’re working hard. They’re working people in the state. Some of them have two or three jobs,” Woodard said.

Expanding Medicaid would mean many of them would qualify for the health care program.

Critics of Medicaid expansion have raised concerns about uncertainty at the federal level and the cost to the state. Lawmakers approved an expansion bill last session, but it was vetoed by Gov. Sam Brownback.

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Stephen Koranda is Statehouse reporter for Kansas Public Radio, a partner in the Kansas News Service. Follow him on Twitter @KPRKoranda.

 
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