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April 16, 2013

New Interactive Map Shows Virginians Eligible for Medicaid Expansion in Every Locality

NOTE: The interactive map in this blog post has been revised and can be found in a new blog post here.

With a state commission on Medicaid expansion about to begin its work, the lawmakers on the commission need to be accountable to the thousands of Virginians in their districts – and across the commonwealth – who lack health insurance.  Namely, to make sure the Medicaid reforms Virginia is undertaking before expansion begins – such as making benefits more like those available through commercial insurance – are carried out.

We’ve created an interactive map that shows how Medicaid expansion will benefit Virginians in every locality, including many in the commission members’ districts. This map complements tables we created during the legislative session showing the number of uninsured adults in each House and Senate district who could get health care coverage if Virginia took the federal dollars already allocated and expanded Medicaid coverage in our state.

The level of support for Medicaid expansion varies significantly among the commission members. Some have agreed that while Medicaid reforms are important, expansion should move forward. Others have expressed concern about expanding Medicaid coverage to more working Virginians. In fact, Speaker Bill Howell suggested that the House delegates on the commission were chosen specifically for their opposition to expansion.

The 10 members of the Medicaid Innovation and Reform Commission (MIRC) are:

Delegate Johnny Joannou (D-79th; Portsmouth)
Delegate Steve Landes (R-25th; Augusta)
Delegate Jimmie Massie (R-72nd; Henrico)
Delegate John O’Bannon (R-73rd; Henrico)
Delegate Beverly Sherwood (R-29th; Winchester)

Senator Emmett Hanger Jr. (R-24th; Augusta)
Senator Janet Howell (D-32nd; Fairfax)
Senator Louise Lucas (D-18th; Portsmouth).
Senator Walter Stosch (R-12th; Henrico)
Senator John Watkins (R-10th; Powhatan)

The commission’s first meeting is in June. With many reforms already under way, the members need to do their homework so they can hit the ground running and hundreds of thousands of Virginians can get the coverage they need to stay healthy and productive.

–Massey Whorley, Senior Policy Analyst

NOTE: The interactive map in this blog post has been revised and can be found in a new blog post here.
The Commonwealth Institute

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