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In some ways, you have to hand it to the McCrory administration for the way it has manipulated messages and public opinion on the state’s health insurance system for poor people, Medicaid.

The McCrory team came into office with a cynical and ideologically-based plan to sell off what has been a successful public program to private corporations. The key to making such a plan politically feasible, therefore, was to convince the news media and the public that the program was somehow “broken.” How better to do this than to repeatedly allege and attempt to show that the program had supposedly massive cost overruns?

And so the P.R. campaign began. Following up on the decision of the conservative General Assembly to demand unreasonable program savings and then complain about “runaway expenses” when the absurd targets weren’t met, the administration helped generate new “audit” numbers that supposedly showed a similar trend — all, of course, the fault of past Democratic governors.

For months the plan worked well as right-wing politicians and think tanks and numerous reporters dutifully repeated the “Medicaid is broken” mantra despite ample evidence to the contrary. The dishonest rap had the added bonus of helping to justify the decision not to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. It even provided a convenient excuse for dozens of other draconian budget cut to education and other essential services.

Now, however, the truth is starting to come out and the P.R. plan is faltering. Read More

N.C. Health and Human Services Sec. Aldona Wos may be feeling the heat over the statewide scrutiny of high salaries given to top employees.

The department sent out an infographic today in a press release highlighting what DHHS sees as its top accomplishments. This came a few days after Wos sent a letter to several legislators defending her performance running the state’s largest agency.

The press release sent Wednesday was light on specifics, with no links to where the facts and figured were pulled from. I’ve asked DHHS for the back-up data used for the infographics and will update this post if and when I hear back.

 

Infographic from N.C. DHHS of 2013 successes.

Source: N.C. Dep’t Health and Human Services

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