Author: Meghan Young

The Stand for Women’s Health in Texas

The Feminist Policy Alliance and the Texas Observer invite you to a panel discussion on Sept. 4 on the battle over women’s health in Texas and how recently passed legislation is changing the health care — and political — landscape in Texas. In a state where only 27 percent of the voting-age population participated in the last gubernatorial election, thousands of people filled the Texas Capitol this summer dressed in orange or blue, protesting, visiting lawmakers, testifying in public hearings and watching floor proceedings from the galleries. For many of them, it was their first time participating in the...

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The Medicaid Debate Texas Should be Having

It seems that one of the major battles of the legislative session will come down, once again, to politics versus prudence. While the Supreme Court upheld most of the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA), it ruled that states have the option of expanding Medicaid eligibility. Although Gov. Rick Perry and other state leaders have adamantly opposed expansion, major stakeholders including the Texas Hospitals Association support it. Nearly one in four Texans are uninsured — the highest rate in the nation. Experts project that full implementation of the ACA will enable about 3 million more Texans to obtain insurance through Medicaid or the private market. Whether some Texas politicians like it or not, the ACA isn’t going anywhere — and Medicaid expansion is an important part of making it work. The ACA requires everyone to have health insurance, but it doesn’t provide assistance to the poorest of the poor. Nearly 2 million uninsured Texans do not qualify for subsidies because they live below the federal poverty level, according to U.S. Census data. That’s where Medicaid should come in. The vast majority of uninsured Texans (78 percent) are adults younger than 65. These are largely the working poor: people in the service industry, employees and owners of small businesses, part-time workers, and others whose employers do not provide health insurance. Medicaid expansion would ensure that these Texans aren’t taxed for being...

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