Oregon approves new taxes for Medicaid costs - KPTV - FOX 12

Oregon approves new taxes for Medicaid costs

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PORTLAND, OR (AP) -

Oregon voters have approved taxes on hospitals, health insurers and managed care companies to address rising Medicaid costs.

The single-issue election Tuesday drew national attention because it gave voters -- and not lawmakers -- the final say on how to fund increasing health care costs.

About 61 percent voted yes on Measure 101 while 39 percent voted no.

The plan is a short-term fix for health care funding that will generate between $210 million and $320 million in revenue over two years.

Measure 101 creates a 0.7 percent tax on some hospitals and a 1.5 percent tax on the gross health insurance premiums and on managed care organizations.

Oregon aggressively expanded its Medicaid rolls under the Affordable Care Act. Now, just 5 percent of its population is uninsured.

Lawmakers must still come up with a long-term funding plan for the more than 350,000 people added to Medicaid and an overall increase in health care expenses.

Governor Kate Brown issued the following statement after Measure 101 passed:

"I'm especially proud of our state tonight. The voters have said loud and clear that everyone deserves access to affordable health care.

While Washington DC falls apart, Oregonians are coming together. This vote sends a clear message that they are sick and tired of partisan efforts to reduce health care access. You should be able to see the doctor when you're sick and have health care you can afford."

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