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Edwards: Medicaid expansion won't solve North Carolina's health care crisis | OPINION

Many North Carolinians believe that Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion is a deal too good to pass up. Most of them are not taking the time to look beyond the partisan talking points. Why wouldn’t North Carolina want to offer “free” health insurance to more than half a million residents and only pay for 10 percent of the cost, since the feds promise to cover the rest of the tab?

Such a significant policy change for such a complex program cannot be viewed so simply. There are severe fiscal and human costs associated with Medicaid expansion that deserve a closer examination.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Inspector General’s Office, 25% of Medicaid expansion enrollees in California and New York were likely ineligible. Couple that with New York’s Medicaid program being $3 billion over budget, and you’ve got a recipe for a budget boondoggle.

Instead of piling more federal debt onto future generations, North Carolina has taken a more fiscally responsible approach with plans to improve the value of our existing Medicaid program and to invest in local organizations that provide medical care to low-income and uninsured people.