Healthcare Business News

Romney would push for Medicaid block grants

By Jessica Zigmond
Posted: September 7, 2011 - 9:45 am ET

Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney said if he's elected, he will introduce five executive proposals on his first day in office—including one that calls for returning “maximum possible authority” to the states so they can design their own healthcare solutions.

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The former Republican governor of Massachusetts released a lengthy plan, called “Believe in America," (PDF) that calls for block grants to Medicaid, which mirrors the Republican budget drafted by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) earlier this year.

“As president, Romney will push for the conversion of Medicaid to a block grant administered by the states,” the plan noted. “This approach could save the federal government over $200 billion each year by the end of the decade, while also providing states with the flexibility to develop innovative and effective approaches best suited to their needs.”

Regarding Medicare, the proposal lauded Ryan's budget proposal for “introducing market-based dynamics,” and said Romney's plan would “differ, but it will share those objectives.”

In addition to introducing five executive orders, Romney promised to propose five bills on his first day in office. Included among those legislative policies are plans to reduce the corporate income tax rate to 25%, open markets in Colombia, Panama and South Korea, and immediately cut non-security discretionary spending by 5%.

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