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Political Boogeyman? Expanding Medicaid in Mississippi, Two Sides to the Argument

JACKSON, MISS– If insurance premiums are not something you can afford, perhaps you’re hoping that Medicaid expansion is in the future for Mississippi. Some say it isn’t possible, others say, it has to happen. 

There’s been talks of expanding Medicaid to nearly 300,000 people.

“Medicaid costs in Mississippi alone are over one billion dollars,” says Governor Phil Bryant, “you’ll hinder job growth, hurt the economy, cost jobs in Mississippi.”

But Roy Mitchell with the Mississippi Health Care Advocacy Program says that politicians are missing the long term picture.

“State leaders have only considered the direct costs of paying for Medicaid expansion and have ignored fiscal benefits,” says Mitchell, “by refusing to expand Medicaid, we’re costing our cities thousands of new jobs and the economic activity.”

Mitchell says it is about more than just getting you covered.

“We have rural hospitals that are threatened with closing. We’ve got the situation with Singing River Hospital down on the Coast.”

Governor Phil Bryant has stated that Mississippi can’t afford to expand Medicaid because the feds could pull money from the program.

“That’s ridiculous,” says Mitchell, “it’s a political boogeyman. The federal government hasn’t pulled money from a myriad of programs.” Mitchell adds that he doesn’t see the federal government pulling money from Medicaid expansion in Mississippi.

Talk back to us about Medicaid expansion. Do you think Medicaid should be expanded in Mississippi? Comment below or on Twitter @News_MS or on facebook at

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