I recently had a tooth filled at my dentist. As I sat there for a basic but important procedure, it struck me that in this country, and certainly this state, it’s not an intervention to which every Nebraskan is entitled.
Meanwhile, Matthew Van Patton, tasked with implementing Medicaid expansion in the state, was unable to tell lawmakers at a hearing when the program would be fully implemented or what services and benefits people would receive.
The director’s lack of clarity on the program’s implementation timeline and services was shocking and disappointing, especially with so little time before Nebraska’s official plan must be submitted to the federal government.
As it stands, Nebraskans don’t know when the will of the voters will be demonstrated. This is simply unacceptable.
In November, Nebraska voters overwhelmingly voted to expand Medicaid to allow others a chance to gain access to basic medical care, such as an important tooth restoration. Thousands of Nebraskans have already waited years for life-saving health care, and no barriers or foot dragging should delay its implementation.
The Department of Health and Human Services should fully implement Initiative 427, no later than Jan. 1, 2020, as demanded by the voters. Suffering Nebraskans have waited long enough.
Jordan Milliken, Lincoln