JACKSON — Reckon conservatives will pay attention when two conservative, pro-capitalism columnists say well being care is an enormous subject in Mississippi?
Both Wyatt Emmerich and Sid Salter have conservative views and are available from the proprietor aspect of newspapers, the place capitalism prevails. Both not too long ago wrote highly effective columns about the necessity to deal with health-care points in Mississippi.
Emmerich wrote about Medicaid enlargement and pointed to a Millsaps College ballot that confirmed “‘making health care more accessible and affordable’ is the third most important issue to Mississippi voters, after fixing the roads and teacher pay raises” (“Medicaid rejection nonsensical for Miss.,” April 18).
Salter wrote about his personal health-care challenges (“How to pay for health care?” April 25). He famous, “Aging baby boomers like me are going to significantly swell the ranks of the uninsured and underinsured over the next 20 years.”
Both the swelling and the vexing are with us already.
Sixty-three of Mississippi’s 82 counties misplaced inhabitants from 2010 via 2018, in accordance with not too long ago launched U.S. Census Bureau information. Significantly, there’s one inhabitants demographic that elevated in each one in all our 82 counties — folks age 65 and older, the group Salter is closing in on.
This older inhabitants phase grew statewide by 21% whereas complete inhabitants grew lower than 1%. Wow!
Also important was the change within the age 18-to-64 inhabitants demographic. Statewide this age group declined 1%. It declined in all 63 counties that misplaced inhabitants plus one other eight counties. That the lower wasn’t larger will be attributed to the expansion of this phase in a handful of huge inhabitants counties — DeSoto, Lamar, Madison, Harrison, Hancock and Rankin, all of which had good complete inhabitants progress
In uncooked numbers, the older phase grew practically 80,000, whereas the youthful phase fell about 26,000.
Why do these tendencies matter?
Well, shrinkage of the 18-to-64 demographic, the key job-holding and taxpayer age group, will lead to fewer folks working and paying taxes in most Mississippi counties.
Growth of the 65-and-older demographic will lead to extra demand for Medicaid-funded nursing dwelling beds, extra Medicaid funding for poor elders on Medicare, and extra health-care entry to hospitals and clinics in rural areas, to not point out greater homestead exemption prices and extra native companies for seniors.
Fewer folks working and paying taxes in most counties with extra folks demanding taxpayer-funded companies in each county — sounds fairly darn vexing to me.
No doubt that’s why Emmerich factors out that Mississippi’s failure to broaden Medicaid could also be costing us each inhabitants progress and jobs.
He pointed to each Louisiana and Arkansas, which expanded Medicaid. Louisiana’s inhabitants grew 126,493 — seven instances Mississippi’s progress price. Arkansas’ grew 97,707 — 5 instances Mississippi’s progress price. He additionally famous that Arkansas tax collections jumped $200 million this 12 months.
Looks like these two conservative neighboring states are utilizing Medicaid enlargement to assist develop their populations and supply wanted well being care to their residents.
What will conservatives in Mississippi do?
• Bill Crawford is a Republican former state lawmaker from Meridian.