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House Announces Two Interim Medicaid Committees

<span style="font-family: Arial;">WASHINGTON D.C. -- The House Speaker wants your help in finalizing the membership of a committee that will weigh what the future of Medicaid in&nbsp;</span><st1:state><st1:place><span style="font-family: Arial;">Missouri</span></st1:place></st1:state><span style="font-family: Arial;">&nbsp;should be.&nbsp;</span>

WASHINGTON D.C. -- The House Speaker wants your help in finalizing the membership of a committee that will weigh what the future of Medicaid in Missouri should be. 

House Speaker Tim Jones (center) announces an interim committee to be chaired by Representative Jay Barnes (left) and a working group to be chaired by Representative Noel Torpey (right). (photo courtesy; Tim Bommel, Missouri House Communications)

Representative Tim Jones (R-Eureka) has announced two new groups to consider Medicaid reform and/or expansion. One of them, the Citizens and Legislators Working Group on Medicaid Eligibility and Reform, will be made up of citizens and legislators taking testimony and other information to be used by the second, the House Interim Committee on Medicaid Transformation when it compiles recommendations to be made to the Republican majority caucus.

Jones wants Missourians to help decide how big the Working Group will be and who will be on it.

"Over the course of the next week my office will take membership recommendations from the general public of the entire state of Missouri for the committee ... my hope is that Missourians from all parts of the state will reach out with any suggestions they have for members. We already have an ever-expanding and growing list of interested folks from all different, diverse walks of life and from across the state."

Jones says he wants that Working Group to dig deep into the details of Missouri's possible future with the Medicaid program.

"To provide citizen-generated ideas and solutions to a problem that has been often dominated by discussions related to dollar signs and false promises of free money rather than doing what is best for the people who most desperately need this care."

Jones used the announcement of the committees to re-state his opposition to a simple expansion of the current Medicaid system.

"We see, and I believe Missourians see, expansion without reform as a massive misuse of taxpayer dollars on a program that provides inferior access to healthcare and poor health outcomes ... and if we dump hundreds of thousands of additional uninsured people into that system and give them a magical plastic card and simply say, 'Well now you have free healthcare,' we will further drive an already broken system into a bankrupt state."

The Working Group will be chaired by Representative Noel Torpey (R-Liberty) and the legislative interim committee will be chaired by Representative Jay Barnes (R-Jefferson City).

The Senate has also announced an interim committee on Medicaid, and a bill awaiting action by the Governor would create a joint legislative committee on the subject.


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