To the Editor:
Kudos to The Des Moines Register, who in their Aug. 27 edition wrote an op-ed citing reasons the state of Iowa should not privatize Medicaid. The Sisters of St. Francis strongly encourage Governor Terry Branstad to change his position on privatizing Medicaid in Iowa. As The Des Moines Register op-ed stated, “The people of Iowa are not celebrating this decision.”
Why is it that all budget cuts our government suggests are on the backs of those who are most in need? Medicaid serves about 550,000 Iowans, primarily the poor and disabled.
Governor Branstad’s decision begs many questions that have yet to be answered: Will private plans guarantee the same benefits that Medicaid does? How will Iowa pay for the private insurance, which looks as though it will eventually cost more than the public program?
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) grants approval for this request; however, it’s the federal government who has the final say, as they provide the majority of funding to Medicaid and can choose to approve or disapprove the privatization request.
The Sisters of St. Francis ask that you voice your concerns to Governor Branstad, as well as the Obama Administration. You may contact the Governor’s office at https://governor. iowa.gov or call (515) 281-5211. The Obama Administration can be contacted at https://www.whitehouse.gov or call (202) 456-1414. Calls may also be made to CMS at (877) 267-2323. Contact these offices and tell them not to grant Iowa permission to privatize.
Sister Anne Martin Phelan, President
Sisters of St. Francis
To the Editor: