Yes- It Does Have a Reimbursement Rate Issue
To hear Republicans talk about it, Medicaid must be a disaster. Because of low reimbursement rates Republicans have gone on the air to say it does no good for its beneficiaries. This is totally false. The argument that some health care practices do not accept Medicaid because it pays so little is true, the argument that this means those in the program do not get health care is utterly false.
Over at the great blog The Incidental Economist health care experts explain how Medicaid is even better than private insurance by some measures. The reasoning is simple, under Medicaid the out of pocket cost for patients is very little, so they seek and receive health care and thus have better outcomes in some situations where if they had private insurance the out of pocket costs would be high and they would not get proper care.
So the problem with Medicaid is not the program, but the reimbursement rates. There are two solutions.
Solution A: Raise the reimbursement rates so that more practices participate.
Solution B: Kill the program.
So who would be dumb enough to selection Solution B? Oh, right, conservatives.