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Taylor Calls For Medicaid Cuts, Changes To Primary Care

Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor in Cleveland. [Matt Richmond / ideastream]

Republican candidate for governor Mary Taylor wants to switch to a direct primary care system. Regular doctor visits would be covered by a monthly membership – patients pay a flat monthly fee to a doctor or company who provides the routine services. Insurance plans would become mainly for catastrophic coverage. It's a system gaining in popularity among the GOP.

Taylor unveiled her proposals for health care in Ohio Monday in Cleveland. As lieutenant governor, Taylor is also head of the state’s Department of Insurance. 

Taylor says direct primary care is already proven in some states where it’s being tried.

“This approach has significantly changed the doctor-patient relationship, providing better, more personal health care at lower costs," says Taylor.

Direct primary care doctors usually do not take insurance, including Medicare or Medicaid.

Taylor also opposes Gov. John Kasich’s Medicaid expansion. She says she would seek to shrink Medicaid with her first budget, if elected next year.

“Medicaid expansion is not sustainable. It cannot be continued into the future. And my plan anticipates that we would, we would eliminate the Medicaid expansion and provide legitimate, sustainable, long-term solutions for some of the most important issues that we face," says Taylor.

Taylor would limit the program in Ohio to those unable to work. She is also proposing optional contributions by small businesses to employees’ health savings accounts.

Matthew Richmond is a reporter/producer at Ideastream Public Media who focuses on criminal justice.