Rob Schofield, NC Newsline
Last week, December 1 — was the day North Carolina became the 40th state to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.
Roughly 300,000 adults who lacked health insurance last month, now have it. And if officials, providers, and nonprofits do an effective job of outreach and enrollment, another 300,000 could gain coverage in the coming months.
Gov. Roy Cooper, who made Medicaid expansion his top policy priority for nearly seven years in the Governor’s mansion, will be in Charlotte today along with Health and Human Services Secretary Kody Kinsley, as well as doctors, advocates and new enrollees, to celebrate the accomplishment.
Meanwhile, President Joe Biden, whose administration worked closely with Cooper to overcome Republican opposition to expansion, took note of the news in the following White House statement:
Statement from President Joe Biden on North Carolina’s Implementation of Medicaid Expansion
Every American deserves high-quality affordable health care. Today, we are one step closer towards meeting that promise, as 600,000 North Carolinians can now access the affordable, quality coverage they need under Medicaid. Thanks to Governor Roy Cooper’s years of leadership, in partnership with bipartisan elected officials, North Carolina is the 40th state to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. 300,000 North Carolinians will receive this coverage immediately and rural hospitals across the state will be able to keep their doors open to continue to care for their communities.
Despite this progress, MAGA Republicans still want to get rid of the Affordable Care Act, just like my predecessor tried and failed to do repeatedly. There are 40 million people who get their health insurance through the Affordable Care Act and repealing the law would put their care at risk. Repealing the Affordable Care Act means that states, including North Carolina, wouldn’t be able to offer care through Medicaid expansion.
Let’s strengthen the Affordable Care Act instead of getting rid of it. Let’s work together to bring down Americans’ health care and prescription drug costs, and expand Medicaid in the 10 remaining states. And to those who want to repeal this lifesaving law let me be clear: I won’t let it happen on my watch.
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