GOP Medicaid cuts would hit states fighting opioid epidemic

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Republican drive to roll back Barack Obama’s health care law is on a collision course with a national opioid epidemic that’s not letting up.

Medicaid cuts resulting from the GOP legislation would hit hard in states deeply affected by the addiction crisis, according to state data and lawmakers in both parties.

The House health care bill would phase out expanded Medicaid, which allows states to provide federally backed insurance to low-income adults previously not eligible. Many people in that demographic are in their 20s and 30s and dealing with opioid addiction.

According to data compiled by The Associated Press, Medicaid expansion accounted for 61 percent of total Medicaid spending on substance abuse treatment in Kentucky, 47 percent in West Virginia, 56 percent in Michigan, and 59 percent in Maryland.

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