Given the current climate around healthcare, I was glad to hear that Senator Portman remains committed to protecting Ohioans’ access to care. It’s my hope that he will continue to be a leader and join with other legislators in preserving Medicaid, a program that provides vital services to Ohioans in need.
Medicaid benefits our communities in numerous ways. For example, 30% of Ohio’s children rely on Medicaid to put them on a path toward a lifetime of wellness and higher achievement. The program also insures half of Ohio residents with disabilities, who might otherwise be unable to get medical care, and it covers low-income, working adults so they can stay on the job.
One of Medicaid’s greatest contributions today is fighting the opioid crisis. The program now offers desperately needed substance abuse treatment services to tens of thousands of individuals across the state who could not afford it on their own.
In the last several years with increased access to Medicaid, The Counseling Center has been able to help over 2,000 people in their battle against addiction. Access to treatment is still not enough to meet demand.
Moreover, Medicaid’s growth has created 67 full-time jobs with us, a majority of them going to individuals in long-term recovery who have been connected to opportunities through our treatment and Clean Hire vocational program. Employment opportunities can be limited for recovering addicts; Medicaid is helping us come full circle with those in recovery as they get their lives back on track.
Medicaid has led to similar success stories across Ohio. Lawmakers must maintain this program, to empower organizations like mine to help even more families in their times of greatest need.