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Kansas Health Committee to Vote on Medicaid Expansion

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — The Kansas House health committee will vote next week on whether to expand the state's privatized Medicaid program, called KanCare. Lawmakers heard testimony Wednesday from cities, businesses, doctors and patients, urging them to expand KanCare. The expansion would provide insurance to an estimated 150,000 Kansans who currently make too much money to qualify for KanCare but not enough to qualify for subsidies to purchase insurance under the Affordable Care Act marketplace. Proponents say the expansion would be at least budget-neutral and might save the state money, partly by reducing emergency care for people who lack access to preventative care. The state budget office estimates that the plan would still cost more than $150,000,000 in the first two fiscal years. Governor Sam Brownback said in a statement that the state shouldn't expand KanCare because the Trump administration will likely repeal the Affordable Care Act. Opponents of the bill will testify Thursday.

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