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When Increasing Medicaid Costs Makes Sense

Responding to a recent New England Journal of Medicine study which found that children on Medicaid have a harder time accessing medical care, Len Nichols — director of the health-care policy program at George Mason University — tells Ezra Klein, “In many cases, we would do better if Medicaid paid more. If we could get more doctors to treat the expectant mothers on the program and give them better care, that’d reduce the really expensive stuff from the neonatal intensive care units. And when you look at that study in the times, notice that the kids were waiting for specialists. That’s a disaster. If the primary care doctor has sent you to a specialist, that means you’ve got a problem they can’t solve. And if you have to wait, it festers.”

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