Monday, October 22, 2012

Oklahoma eyeing Medicaid funds for prison hospital costs

A staff editorial in the Tulsa World cited Medicaid funding for prison hospital services as a compelling argument as to why the state should accept federal money for Medicaid expansion in 2014, urging lawmakers to wait past election season to make up their minds. The editorial closes:
With more than 25,000 inmates behind bars, and one of the highest per-capita incarceration rates in the nation, Oklahoma spends a lot on prisons and has for the past 40 years. Inmates aren't always in the best health. With its tough 85-percent rule requiring certain offenders to serve most of their sentence before being eligible for release, inmates are staying in prison longer and therefore growing old there. The geriatric-age prison population is growing rapidly and with aging, coupled with a poor health history, come health problems.

Already, some older, blind and disabled inmates qualify for Medicaid-funded hospitalization. The change would make the eligibility almost universal in the prison system.  ...

Inmate care is an expensive proposition. If most of that cost could be shifted to the federal government, Oklahoma tax dollars might be freed up for other programs such as education and infrastructure. DOC is wise to take a wait-and-see approach and not to refuse the money quickly like Texas apparently has done.
See related Grits posts:

1 comment:

DeathBreath said...

In Oklahoma, there seems to be a Church located every three feet.

Oklahoma seems to harbor: methamphetamine users and compromised law enforcement agents who allow such activity; Biblical Reconstructionists who vow to enact Biblical law; & Bible-thumping followers of J.C. & Dr. James Dobson.

Many in Oklahoma are members of the Tea Party or GOP. I thought these individuals despised having government in their lives. But, here we have an example of how hypocrisy clouds the picture.

Yes, many Oakies are willing to oppose the U.S. Government unless it benefits them in some manner.

In my opinion, they are nothing but hypocrites and whores of the Gospel.