Sarah Riggs Amico Profile picture
Aug 18, 2018 11 tweets 5 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
Rural healthcare reality✔️: thread.

For 14 yrs, 1 party (GOP) has controlled GA state gov’t w/legislative majorities + Governor.

In that time, 7 rural have hospitals closed. 64 counties have no pediatrician, 79 no OB/GYN, 9 no doctor at all. 1/
Per the article: “Georgia’s GOP-dominated Legislature decided not to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, saying the state could not afford the long-term cost. That has left adults who earn less than the poverty level uninsured.”
Result: 240k Georgians in ‘Medicaid Gap’
That means 240,000 more Georgians COULD have health insurance if we expanded Medicaid - but that ONE party in power (GOP) chose not to do so. That same decision also cost Georgia 56,000 JOBS annually and $6.5 billion in economic output according to @GaBudget
In fact, a new report this year estimated that Medicaid Expansion in Georgia could provide health insurance for nearly 500,000 Georgians!…
An estimated 160,000 Georgia kids lacked health insurance in 2017. That’s an improvement of 3k from 2016, but there’s still a lot of work to do & experts credit much of this improvement to “...public sources of coverage, most notably Medicaid and CHIP....”…
The lack of healthcare for some Georgians affects ALL of us:

“You don’t see it immediately or directly in the cities, but people who don’t have good access to care, when they get there, they’re sicker, they come there later and their use of resources is higher,” Dr. Vikas Saini
But here’s the thing that gets me -we actually CAN afford to expand Medicaid. It takes about $136 million per year, net of economic impact. Here’s the math:
Georgia GOP’s answer? Give $60 million in tax breaks to get $60 million in corporate & individual donations to rural hospitals.

They gave $60 million to get $60 million.

Yet they refuse to fund $136 million/year to get $33.7 billion over 10 yrs via Medicaid expansion.🤦‍♀️
Across this state we’ve seen the effects of 14 years of failed GOP leadership on rural healthcare.

As rural hospitals close, the families & economies in their communities suffer. Here’s what that looked like for Stewart-Webster Hospital (closed in 2013):…
Here’s what 14 years of GOP leadership in Georgia - and their failure to fix rural healthcare - looks like for some residents of Rabun County in NE Georgia:…
Here’s what voters said in April about our state’s rural healthcare crisis & rural hospital closures (note that less than 6 months after we made this video the stats are WORSE: 64 counties w/o a pediatrician, 9 w/o a doctor, 7 hospitals closed in 5 yrs):…

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More from @SarahRiggsAmico

Jul 28, 2018
“When Republicans focus on these side issues like religious liberty, when they spend more time on a resolution about kneeling football players than they do on fixing the rural health care crisis, that’s heat loss....It literally conducts energy away from the problems at hand.” 1/
Afterwards I asked her how this Democratic team of women would work over the next few months. “Women learned a long time ago that one of the best ways to make our voices heard was to amplify one another. I’ve seen it in the board room, and I’ve certainly seen it in politics,” 2/
But Amico doesn’t want the general election to become a battle of the sexes. “This is a slate of candidates that looks like the state. What I love is, there’s this consistent, pragmatic, problem-solving, results-oriented approach,” she said. 3/
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