State Rep. Wadsworth offers FQHCs as alternative to Medicaid expansion for rural health care
The recent string of rural hospital closures has been at the forefront of the debate on whether or not to expand Medicaid rolls in Alabama as some citizens find themselves without nearby access to health care.
However, State Rep. Tim Wadsworth (R-Arley), a member of the legislature that represents portions of rural Winston, Walker and Jefferson Counties, suggested an alternative to a potentially costly endeavor as such as Medicaid expansion as a solution to that problem in the form of Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC).
During an appearance on Alabama Public Television’s “Capitol Journal,” Wadsworth spoke about his district’s experience with one of those facilities, which he touted as a better choice than Medicaid expansion.
“It is,” he replied. “FQHC, there are still federal dollars that come, and it doesn’t require state dollars. The problem you have with expanding Medicaid is that Medicaid — there’s just not enough money to fund the expansion of Medicaid right now. But the FQHC does not require expanding Medicaid, and they still see Medicaid patients and Medicare patients, too. A lot of doctors will not see a Medicaid patient, a Medicare patient, and they’ll turn them away. Or they’re off four days a week, and you can’t get in, or it takes a while to see them.”