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Brownback Covered Budget Deficit By Tossing Disabled People Off Medicaid

Kansas could simply have expanded Medicaid to everyone who needed it at no cost to his state, but the Koch-owned state legislators wouldn't allow it.
Brownback Covered Budget Deficit By Tossing Disabled People Off Medicaid
Image from: David Pakman Show

That Kansas "experiment" just keeps getting worse and worse. Between the draconian cuts to public schools, the teacher abuse, and the big tax benefits for the Koch brothers, Sam Brownback has created a Third World country right in the heartland.

And now this news out of Kansas. In order to handle the greater-than-expected deficit, Brownback tossed severely disabled people off Kansas' privatized Medicaid program.

ThinkProgress:

Since Brownback’s inauguration, 1,414 Kansans with disabilities have been forced off of the Medicaid physical disability (PD) waiver. In January of 2013, Brownback became the first governor to fully privatize Medicaid services, claiming he would save the state $1 billion in 5 years without having to cut services, eligibility, or provider payments. Now, under Brownback’s “KanCare,” PD waiver cases are handled by for-profit, out-of-state, Fortune 500, publicly-traded managed care services. Kansas has contracts with three managed care profiteers — United Healthcare, Sunflower State Health Plan (owned by Centene Corporation), and AmeriGroup. Amerigroup and Centene each gave $2,000, Kansas’ maximum allowed contribution, to Brownback’s re-election campaign.

“They wanted to cut my full-time care hours by 76 percent, which all three of my doctors said was totally unrealistic,” said Finn Bullers, a disability rights advocate who suffers from muscular dystrophy, uses a wheelchair, has type 1 insulin-dependent diabetes, and requires a ventilator in his throat to breathe. “Essentially, they wanted three out of every four hours to go away.”

It's time for Kansas to decide whether they want this to support policies like this with their votes. They know what to do if they're as tired of it as the rest of us.


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