05-R 090

2005 -- H 5574

Enacted 02/16/05


H O U S E  R E S O L U T I O N




     Introduced By: Representatives Sullivan, Jackson, Davey, Fox, and Gemma

     Date Introduced: February 15, 2005



     WHEREAS, Over 53 million Americans, including 185,000 Rhode Islanders, rely on

Medicaid for their health care; and

     WHEREAS, In the most recent recession, millions of Americans who otherwise would

have been without health insurance had coverage including affordable prescription drugs thanks

to Medicaid; and

     WHEREAS, Any federal cuts in this critical program will impair the health benefits these

vulnerable Americans receive, and diminish the program's ability to meet the growing need for

health coverage for low-income people, those with disabilities and the elderly; and

     WHEREAS, While recognizing the need to address rising health care costs that face our

state and nation, we must also take into consideration that the overall growth rate of Medicaid is

lower than that of private health insurance premiums; and

     WHEREAS, Medicaid cuts or funding caps would shift billions of dollars in health care

costs to state and local governments, at a time when states are already dealing with the rising cost

of health care and prescription drugs and an aging population; and

     WHEREAS, States need reliable and consistent federal Medicaid funding to sustain their

Medicaid programs, and reducing or capping federal funding would severely strain state budgets

and move state fiscal policy in the wrong direction; now, therefore be it

     RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island and

Providence Plantations opposes changes in the structure of the Medicaid program that would

convert the program into a block grant or otherwise impose caps on federal funding or reduce

funding to the states; and be it further

     RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island and

Providence Plantations respectfully requests that the Rhode Island congressional delegation

support a FY 2006 federal budget that protects both the funding and structure of the Medicaid

program so that it may continue to meet the vital health care needs of the most vulnerable Rhode

Islanders; and be it further

     RESOLVED, That a copy of this resolution be forwarded to the President of the United

States and the Rhode Island members of Congress.