Gov. Says No Medicaid Expansion This Session

Feb 29, 2016

Governor Dennis Daugaard says he won’t ask state legislators to consider Medicaid expansion this session. He says there’s not enough time to fully consider the issue.

Governor Dennis Daugaard says a bunch of details need to be hashed out before Medicaid expansion can happen in South Dakota. Including agreements with the Indian Health Service and contracts for healthcare providers.  Last week the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued a letter outlining significant policy changes. Governor Daugaard says this opens the door, but now changes are needed in South Dakota to make it work.

“Changing this contracting situation and this health information exchange won’t give them any more money for the patients they’re serving today who are Medicaid eligible,” Daugaard says. “Unless they will get paid for patients they’re serving today for whom they’re not getting payment. That only works if there’s expansion. So why would any of these providers go through all the work to create contracts. Why would the tribes even want to do it? Or why would IHS want to do it?”
Governor Daugaard says he won’t expand Medicaid without approval from the Legislature and the tribes.
He says he hopes lawmakers can address Medicaid expansion in a special session.
“If the savings can be identified and if implementation is practically realistic,” Daugaard says. “Because again we have to identify where these expenditures are occurring and where we might get some of these contracts in place, and the willingness of those contracting parties to enter into contracts like that, as an example.”
Daugaard says officials are moving ahead with several implementation areas, including telehealth services, working toward developing satellite clinics, behavioral health, and hospital transition services.