MISSOURI – Missouri’s Democratic and Republican candidates for governor have very different views on healthcare and their plans for healthcare in Missouri.
US News and World Report ranked Missouri 41st in the country for healthcare for its residents.
In August, Missourians voted to expand Medicaid in the state, but there are concerns where the money for the expansion will come from. 53 percent of those who voted in the August election voted for the expansion of Medicaid.
“The people of the state voted for this. We’re going to have to implement it,” Governor Mike Parson said.
But Gov. Parson also said it is not easy to expand Medicaid.
“It’s not going to be free. Anytime there is an expansion in state government it’s not going to be free,” Parson said.
State auditor and Democratic candidate Nicole Galloway thinks otherwise.
Galloway said she hopes to open a clinic in every county in the state, after seven hospitals have closed since 2010.
“On my watch, your zip code won’t determine your access to healthcare,” Galloway said in an advertisement.
“Study after study, non-partisan study, has shown that it can be done without increasing taxes and without gutting other accounts. We can look at the experience of 37 other states,” Galloway said when speaking with the press after the Gubernatorial Forum.
Galloway criticized Gov. Parson for his views on healthcare, especially when related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We’re in a pandemic. The problems we face are big. We can’t have a governor who does so little,” Galloway said in an advertisement.
Supporters of Gov. Parson believe his efforts during the pandemic were enough.
“There was no playbook for a global pandemic like that. Governor Parson was like our quarterback. He wanted to know what we were hearing, what we were seeing and what we needed” Christy Shawan, a healthcare executive featured in the governor’s advertisements, said.
Missouri must expand Medicaid by July 1, 2021, and inform the federal government by March 1.