As state lawmakers and Gov. McCrory argue about ways to cut public outlays for Medicaid — the public health insurance system for people of low income — the lead editorials in North Carolina’s two largest newspapers offer some straightforward and compelling truths this morning that ought to guide their discussions:
1) Service cuts harm real people in need and 2) Things ain’t gonna’ improve as long as Dr. Aldona Wos runs the show.
As Raleigh’s News & Observer reminds us, when legislators cut services to save money (even though, as the editorial notes, per person costs are down and quality of service is up) they make life hell for people like Mason Leonard and his mom Colleen:
“Mason Leonard, 14, of Cary is severely disabled. He was brain-damaged at birth and cannot care for himself. He can’t be left alone, can’t feed himself or look after any of his needs.
But thanks to a few Medicaid services, he receives therapy, gets out a little, gets trained in things like making his bed, which, when he accomplishes it, is considered a big step….
A Medicaid policy change last year, for example, eliminated weekend hours for teaching Mason how to function with basic skills. His mother understandably fears what new hardships further “reform” will produce.
Here is what the public needs to understand about the budget cutting and reform conducted under the banner of ‘efficiency.’ For each cut, for each decision to eliminate some benefit, a disabled person such as Mason Leonard or a poor person with no alternative for care except what Medicaid provides and their caregivers and family members suffer discomfort or pain.”
And then there’s this bit of plain truth from the Charlotte Observer: state Health and Human Services Secretary Aldona Wos simply has to go. As the Observer notes: Read More