To the editor:

According to a report released by The Center for Community Solutions, Highland County is among those Ohio counties that would be most harmed by proposed federal and/or state changes in Ohio’s Medicaid program. That’s because three out of 10 Highland County residents receive their health care coverage via the Medicaid program.

The program also pays Highland County health care providers over $76 million annually.

The GOP proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act would cut Medicaid reimbursements to Highland County health care providers by as much as $114 million between 2019 and 2025. This would translate into painful reductions in eligibility, services, and the rates paid to Highland County health care providers.

A state budget proposal pending in the Ohio General Assembly would also end Medicaid coverage for some unemployed adults.

Highland County has an unemployment rate much higher than the state rate, so the proposal to eliminate Medicaid coverage for some unemployed adults will have a larger negative effect.

Federal and state proposals to cap Medicaid spending and/or to reduce eligibility could harm already economically fragile rural Ohio counties like Highland County where residents are much more likely to depend on Medicaid as a source of health care coverage than those living in mostly urban and suburban counties.

A copy of the report can be accessed at http://www.CommunitySolutions.com/Medicaid.

Sincerely,
John R. Corlett
President and Executive Director
The Center for Community Solutions
1501 Euclid Avenue, Suite 310
Cleveland, Ohio 44115