Reynolds, Hubbell Have Differing Opinions on Privatization of Medicaid

Gov. Kim Reynolds and Fred Hubbell (WHO-HD)

DES MOINES, Iowa — The two major party candidates for governor in Iowa made their cases this weekend on the state’s Medicaid system.

Gov. Kim Reynolds maintains that the decision to privatize the system is the correct one, despite criticisms that recipients have suffered reduced care and providers aren’t getting paid on time.

“Well, what we are focused on is a sustainable system, so I could look parents in the eye and assure them that this will be here long after they are gone for their loved one, that wasn’t the case two years ago,” said Reynolds.

Former governor Terry Branstad turned the $5 billion Medicaid program over to private companies to manage in 2016.

Reynolds was lieutenant governor at the time. Now as governor, she says Medicaid is moving in the right direction since she took office in 2017.

But her opponent Democrat Fred Hubbell says people were better off before the health care program went private.

‘People are being treated badly. They are having their benefits denied and reduced…40,000 people in the last two years. We`ve had health care providers driven out of business because they aren’t properly paid and costs are going up more now than they were before the privatization of Medicaid,” said Hubbell.

More than 700,000 elderly, children, and low-income Iowans rely on the Medicaid system for health care.