Perry should have taken Medicaid expansion

Jan. 2, 2014 at 6 p.m.
Updated Jan. 1, 2014 at 7:02 p.m.

Editor, the Advocate:

I'm a Republican, but I'm taking no pleasure in watching the problems of the "Obamacare" rollout. Something needed to be done about our health care system, but the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is going to do neither. In fact, "Obamacare" is misnamed. Obama, Nancy and Harry had no idea what was in the act when it was passed. It should have been called the Ivy League Care bill. It was put together by a group of Ivy League Ph.D.'s who have never been involved in direct patient care. It would be like a group of physicians redoing the legal codes.

That said, I think Gov. Perry made a mistake by refusing to take the federal funds and enlarge the Medicaid program. He should have taken the money and cautioned the voters that when the federal matching funds are cut back in 3 years, it would mean an increase in state taxes (sales and property) because Texas has to have a balanced budget. I predict that the feds are going to have to pressure physicians and hospitals to get them to accept the increased Medicaid patients and the low reimbursing pool plans. Hospitals like M.D. Anderson could have research funds reduced if they don't agree to the fed's demands. Physicians like me need 3 licenses to practice: a federal DEA number, a Texas state license and a Texas DPS permit. My DEA number could be withheld if I don't agree to see certain patients that the feds want me to see, and I don't think the 13th Amendment will protect me. My advice to the American public for the next few years is don't get sick, and if you do, pray that you'll be able to get access to the care you need.

Carleton K. Thompson Jr., Hallettsville



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