The Texas Legislative Guide was designed and developed by Becca Aaronson, Emily Albracht, Daniel Craigmile, Annie Daniel, Ben Hasson and Ryan Murphy for The Texas Tribune. The Tribune is a nonpartisan, nonprofit media organization that promotes civic engagement and discourse on public policy, politics, government and other matters of statewide concern.
Under the Affordable Care Act, President Obama’s signature health law, Texas was eligible to receive more than a hundred million federal dollars to put more poor adults onto Medicaid, the joint state-federal insurer of indigent children and the disabled. Republican leaders here said there were too many strings attached, and that Texas would not participate in expanding a “broken” Medicaid system.
There were no successful legislative efforts in the 2015 session to overrule that sentiment. GOP lawmakers stood firm on that, despite news that billions of federal dollars for hospitals could be in jeopardy if the state didn't expand Medicaid to cover more low-income Texans.
A Texas waiver — valued at $29 billion — that provides federal funding for hospitals expires in 2016. Federal officials called the state's health agency in April to say that Texas' reluctance to expand Medicaid will play into whether they will extend the waiver.
Updated: May 28, 2015
- Consolidating Texas’ health agencies
- Addressing a physician shortage
- Medicaid expansion or its alternatives
- Reforming end-of-life care
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