RALEIGH, N.C. -- A small community hospital in eastern North Carolina is closing after state officials declined Medicaid expansion under the federal Affordable Care Act. [...]Along with losing their hospital, the community of 1,700 will also be losing about 100 jobs at that hospital. Beyond hurting the people who are already uninsured, the political decision by these Republican lawmakers is hurting their economies. And creating more unemployed and uninsured people. Boy, that'll show the Democrats and President Obama.
Vidant CEO David Herman said the 60-year-old hospital's closing is triggered by the decision of North Carolina lawmakers to refuse federal funding to expand Medicaid. The company plans to open a small outpatient clinic in Belhaven, but patients needing emergency care would need to be transported to another Vidant hospital in Washington, 26 miles away.
There was a reason hospitals lobbied so hard to get Republican governors to sign on to Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act: Those dollars are critical to keep community hospitals, in particular, open. The increased funding and the promise of having to provide much less uncompensated care is just necessary. That's proven by what's happening now in North Carolina, where Medicaid expansion was refused.