All Texans deserve access to affordable health care so that they’re well enough to go to school, pursue a career, and live to their full potential. But with 1 in 5 Texans uninsured, Texas leads the nation in the number of people who can’t afford to see a doctor or fill a prescription—and we rank dead last in the nation when it comes to mental health care access.
While expanding Medicaid is our best shot at turning things around, Greg Abbott has refused to take action, keeping $100 billion of our own federal tax dollars from coming back to Texas to insure more people.
But it’s more than that: This means that when an uninsured Texan goes to the emergency room, all of us foot the bill in the form of higher insurance premiums and higher taxes to our local hospital districts—which helps to explain why Texas has some of the highest property taxes and health care costs in the entire country.
The failure to expand Medicaid is driving up our property taxes and insurance premiums.
Since taking office, Governor Abbott has also slashed funding for programs designed to recruit and retain medical professionals by nearly half, which helps to explain why our hospitals are 20,000 nurses short, and why over half of Texas counties lack a medical specialist or mental health provider of any kind.
As governor, I will do the commonsense, fiscally-responsible thing and expand Medicaid to bring billions of your federal tax dollars back home to Texas to help more people see a doctor. Expanding Medicaid will create nearly 300,000 jobs in Texas, keep rural hospitals open, and reduce property taxes and health care costs across the board.
In addition to my Nursing Jobs Plan—which will create a state-sponsored scholarship and apprenticeship program to recruit 7,500 registered nurses every year until Texas’ nursing shortage is eliminated—I will also restore funding for programs designed to recruit and retain the best and brightest doctors and mental health providers to Texas.
We’ll take Texas from having the worst health care system in the country to having one of the best.