Yesterday, the Republican-controlled Ohio House of Representatives overrode eleven items Governor John Kasich vetoed in the recently passed state budget, House Bill (HB) 49. Under the House’s overrides, Medicaid expansion would have to be reauthorized through the state Controlling Board and new taxes on working people could be put in place as a condition of healthcare coverage.


“On Wednesday, July 5, hundreds of protesters gathered outside the Statehouse to voice their support for Medicaid,” said Rep. Michael Ashford (D-Toledo). “Although House Republicans did not push for the Medicaid freeze yesterday, they found a loophole to limit healthcare access by giving the Controlling Board the authority to restrict Medicaid expansion. These kinds of bureaucratic hurdles will make it harder for our communities to get the care they need, including more than three million low-income and disabled Ohioans.”


The House also tried to find a way to keep almost $200 million per-year in local funding for communities intact by instructing the Kasich Administration to seek a federal waiver from the Trump Administration for a revised tax on Medicaid managed care services.


Republican lawmakers potentially added more restrictions to Medicaid healthcare services by trying to house authority for approval of optional services like dental, breast and cervical cancer screenings with the Republican-controlled legislature, a move the Kasich Administration contends is in violation of federal law.


House Republicans didn’t take the possibility of a Medicaid freeze off the table entirely, saying they will wait for Congress to act before making a final decision.


The House also overrode vetoes related to nursing home funding, Medicaid rates neonatal and newborn care, and a provision that has prevented oil and gas exploration in state parks and nature reserves.

 
 
 
  
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