Letter to the Editor

Medicaid impacts economy

Picture an average person -- a doctor, nurse, janitor, or construction worker. What do they do when they aren't working? They spend money. They go to eat at restaurants, buy groceries, give their kids lunch money, and go to the movies. Their employers also spend money, too. They pay for wages and supplies. All that spending is taxed by the state.

In the medical world, a lot of that money comes from Medicaid. Without Medicaid, there would be fewer dollars for health care businesses to spend on wages. This means that fewer people can spend money at restaurants or enjoy themselves at a movie.

Politicians think that Medicaid just costs too much. But that's just not true. Medicaid is more than about spending. It actually stimulates the economy. A study found in Health Affairs shows that by expanding Medicaid, the state will get money from the federal government. And because of the health care business, every 90 cents from the government would turn into between $1.35 and $1.80 of private business spending. This actually generates revenue for the state without raising taxes. It's a win-win. Politicians in Missouri should expand Medicaid because Missouri will generate more revenue that stimulates the economy while making sure that its citizens stay healthy.

Lucinda Gooch, Dexter