Healthcare group hosts final lobby day of session

9 months 2 weeks 4 days ago Tuesday, April 30 2019 Apr 30, 2019 Tuesday, April 30, 2019 5:08:00 PM CDT April 30, 2019 in News
By: Temi Oshadiya, KOMU 8 Reporter
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JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri Healthcare for All (MHCFA) will host its last big lobby day of the legislative session on Wednesday. 

"We find these lobby days incredibly effective in getting messages to reach the legislators," MHCFA Executive Director Jen Bersdale said.

Bersdale said legislators tend to listen to constituents during lobbying days because they have a chance to see how their polices affect these people. 

"They really do listen when people from their own district through out the state who they do not see as being politically connected or having a stake in the fight," Bersdale said. "But these are real people that have come to share their stories and the stories of the people they know, and talk about the impact of these big, lofty policies on lives, their lives, and lives of people living back in the home communities."

MHCFA told KOMU 8 News it has two main priorities for Wednesday. The first involves stopping HB183, a proposal, the group said, would add "busy work" requirements to Medicaid.

The second priority relates to work on bills that would add more strength to previously-passed legislation.

Bersdale said the first issue is a priority because it is a policy that adds more bureaucracy to already complex requirements. 

"What these policies do is impose a new level of bureaucracy on people who rely on Medicaid for their health insurance," she said. "They are not realistic requirements and it's actually impossible for people to meet them and still meet the other requirements for eligibility for Medicaid."
She said the policy is unnecessary and helps no one. 
"There is no evidence from any where in the country that putting this type of bureaucracy actually helps anyone achieve economic efficiency," she said.  "Instead what they do is lead to people losing their health insurance because they cannot meet the bureaucratic requirements not because they aren’t working hard enough."
KOMU 8 News reached out to the sponsor of the bill, Rep. Curtis Trent, R-Springfield, but has not heard back. 
More information of the lobby days can be found on MHCFA's website

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