Arlene Wohlgemuth and I have an op-ed in this weekend’s edition of the Houston Chronicle on why federal block grants are the right way forward for Medicaid reform in Texas.
On both the acute and long-term care side of Medicaid, the program suffers from the same problems as the broader health system. Third-party insurance – in this case public insurance, poorly managed by the federal and state governments – creates distance between those providing care and those receiving it.
With the freedom that a block grant would afford, the state could use Medicaid funds to offer a version of “premium support,” and subsidize the purchase of private insurance for non-disabled, non-elderly enrollees, who could choose an insurance plan from a competitive field. It is through this kind of competition that costs can be held in check.
You can read the rest of the piece online here, and those interested can look at our more detailed proposal on Medicaid reform in Texas here.