Missouri House debating health care expansion

Tuesday, May 12, 2009 | 8:42 p.m. CDT; updated 11:23 a.m. CDT, Thursday, September 3, 2009

JEFFERSON CITY — The Missouri House has begun debate on a plan that could expand government-subsidized health care to low-income Missourians who have difficulty getting insurance.

The House debate on the bill Tuesday night fulfilled a pledge made by legislative leaders last week when they passed a budget setting aside $147 million for a potential health care expansion.

The funding is contingent on the House, Senate and Gov. Jay Nixon ultimately agreeing on a health care plan.

Nixon has proposed an expansion of the Medicaid program to cover custodial parents earning up to 50 percent of the poverty level.

The Senate has passed a bill creating a new government program to cover the same pool of people.

The House plan would cover a smaller subset of low-income adults through the state's existing high-risk insurance pool.



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