Governor-Appointed Panel Recommends Expanding Medicaid In Idaho...Again

Aug 15, 2014

Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

An Idaho work group says the state should expand its Medicaid eligibility, but committee members voiced concerns that their recommendation will be ignored by both the governor and legislators.

The 15-member group voted Thursday to submit their recommendation to Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter.

This is the second time this work group has supported expanding Medicaid to provide coverage to the state's working poor. Their 2012 recommendation, however, has been ignored for the past two years.

House Majority Leader Mike Moyle of Star says lawmakers will still not approve expanding Medicaid because the topic has become politically toxic.

Yet Dr. Ted Epperly of Boise says Idaho's current indigent system is not sustainable and lawmakers must stop avoiding addressing the difficult topic.