Sarah E. Williams
All Virginians — health care providers, business people and households — will benefit if Virginia expands Medicaid in 2014. Democratic candidate for governor Terry McAuliffe sees, as his opponent does not, that Medicaid expansion is the first cost-saving reform Virginia must make, insuring low-income, working adults and moving their care from expensive emergency rooms to cost-effective primary care.
McAuliffe calls Medicaid expansion “morally and socially right.” Data in the Chmura Economic Impact Study on Virginia Medicaid Expansion, commissioned by the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association, demonstrates that expansion is also economically right, yielding an annual average benefit of $3.9 billion and 30,821 jobs from 2014 to 2019. The 52-page study is online at http://tinyurl.com/k4a9ldr.
Williams, of Bristol, is chairwoman of the Bristol Virginia Democratic Committee.