At a recent meeting of the state’s legislative leaders, House Appropriations Chair Herb Frierson, R-Poplarville, lamented the fact that the ever increasing spending by the state on Medicaid was taking funds from education – namely higher education.
A simple glance at state budgets for the past decade would reinforce that contention. In Fiscal Year 2003, the state spent $421.8 million on Medicaid. In Fiscal Year 2014, it is estimated the state will spend $840.1 million on Medicaid.
During the same period, spending on education from the kindergarten through university level has remained level at best and has dropped in some instances.
But what the state has experienced with Medicaid is nothing different than what businesses and households across the state have dealt with in regards to health care costs.