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South Dakota Task Force Discussing Medicaid Expansion

The question of expanding Medicaid Coverage to more South Dakotans is the being discussed by a Task Force, meeting this summer.

One member of the group is State Senator Tim Rave, from Baltic, South Dakota. Senator Rave spoke on KSOO’s Viewpoint University Monday April 29th, with Rick Knobe and Dan Peters.

According to Senator Rave the Task Force, made up of various stake holders involved with the issue,  will not make a “Expand” or “Don’t Expand” recommendation. They will file a report outlining the affects either decision will have on State Government and its citizens.

This first meeting was held in Pierre. Testimony was heard from many interest groups. According to Rave, there were more questions raised than answers provided.

The next meeting of the Task Force will take place May 13 and 14, in Rapid City. At that meeting, the plan is to hear answers to the questions posed, and to hear reports from state staff and the consultant, on impacts to be felt here, and what is happening in other states. As a side note, but very important, as of last week, not one of the governors who have publicly stated they would expand coverage, have actually signed on the dotted line to do so.

Senator Rave stated the complexity of the issue. There are many moving and non moving parts. One choice can have huge impacts on other parts of the “medicaid machine.”

In June, there will be a meeting of the Medicaid Task Force in Sioux Falls. Dates and location not yet determined.

If you wish to follow the work of this Task Force, log onto the South Dakota Legislative Research Council web page. Find the Medicaid Task Force file and you will be up to date on their work.

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