South Dakota Focus: Amendment D
This video is from SDPB's news program, South Dakota Focus.
Medicaid is a partnership between federal and state governments that uses public funds to cover healthcare costs for people who meet certain requirements. Right now, South Dakota Medicaid covers children...pregnant people...people with disabilities...people 65 and older...and people who make 46% or less than the federal poverty line. That's an annual income of less than $13 thousand dollars for a family of four.
By expanding Medicaid, the state could include anyone between the ages of 18 and 65 who makes 138% or less than the Federal Poverty Line. That's a little more than 38-thousand dollars a year for a family of four.
Dozens of local organizations have come out in favor of expanding Medicaid eligibility through this constitutional amendment. Supporters include the state's top healthcare providers as well as the state chamber of commerce.
First, we'll hear from supporters of Medicaid expansion. They say it can close the coverage gap for people who earn too much for Medicaid now but make too little to afford insurance any other way.
The loudest voices against the measure belong to state lawmakers. But while some oppose expansion full-stop, others fear the ramifications of changing the state constitution.