Kansas poll shows strong support for expanding Medicaid program

Kansas voters continue to support expanding the Kansas Medicaid program that would extend health care coverage under KanCare to include about 150,000 individuals earning less than 138 percent of the federal poverty level.

This support (62 percent) has remained consistent over the past two years.

The February 2016 state?wide public opinion poll shows majority support for expanding KanCare across all four congressional districts in Kansas, and among both men and women in all age groups.

This recent poll found that support for expanding KanCare grew to as much as 76 percent as Kansans learned of new legislation that proposes a budget-neutral program, ?The Bridge to a Healthy Kansas.?

After learning that a new budget-neutral program would require beneficiaries to meet legal residency and work-status requirements and pay a portion of their own health care costs, there was a 14-point increase in support and a nine-point decrease in opposition: 76 percent expressed support, 20 percent were not supportive, and four percent were not sure.

Among Republicans, support ranged from 74 to 77 percent when eligibility requirements were explained; among Indepen?dents, support reached 82 percent; and among Democrats, support was 71-74 percent.

Similarly, 72 percent of the Kansas residents surveyed expressed support after learning ?The Bridge to a Healthy Kansas? program is not Obamacare, but rather, a unique, budget-neutral solution that will not require the use of state general funds and will likely produce a net financial gain for Kansas.

This statewide public opinion poll was conducted by Public Opinion Strategies from Feb. 18-21. Results can be found on the KHA website at kha-net.org.

The survey was administered by phone to a stratified random sample of 500 likely voters in Kansas, including 200 cell-phone respondents. The overall results of the survey have a margin of error of plus or minus 4.38 percent. ?KHI News Service

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