What to Ask Candidates About Medicaid

This year as political candidates are running for election or re-election, they will be asking for your vote. Since our elected officials determine the fate of Medicaid funds, it’s important that we all place informed votes when the time comes. If/when these people ask for your vote, be prepared to ask them some questions in return!

Cuts to Medicaid:

Currently, it seems that Medicaid is taking big hits to funding in all areas.

  • Do you believe that Medicaid needs further cuts?
  • How would you improve Medicaid spending without cutting it?
  • What is your position on adding more restrictions — such as work requirements or enrollment freezes — to programs like Medicaid?

Coverage for All Children:

Today, 96 percent of children in Arkansas have health coverage because of ARKids, funded by Medicaid, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). It ensures over half of children in the state have a reliable source of coverage that their families can afford.

  • How will you protect health coverage for children?

Special Needs & Disability:

Arkansas has a good reputation for providing for special needs populations. However, recent actions seem to move toward what surrounding states are doing, which is not acceptable.

  • How would you protect the funding for special needs and disabled people?
  • Currently thousands of people are waiting for needed services. What ways do you see to move people off of the DDS Waiver Waiting List faster to get the services they need?
  • Would you move this population to managed care if the current PASSE system doesn’t work?

Behavioral Health Needs:

The Behavioral Health options in this state are lacking, especially when it comes to timely treatment state-wide for someone with those needs.

  • How would you improve Behavioral Health treatment options for those on Medicaid across the state?
  • Would you move this population to managed care if the current PASSE system doesn’t work?

Access to Health Care:

In addition to coverage, it is important that families can get the high-quality health care treatment they need. Currently, people struggle to find a doctor who will accept Medicaid to treat them, or they don’t have transportation to the next available provider. By putting the right policies in place, we can improve access to care for all Arkansans.

  • How will you ensure that all children and families in Arkansas have access to high-quality health care?
  • How can you get more providers all over the state to accept Medicaid patients?

Arkansas Works:

Up to 300,000 adults have access to a ordable health coverage because of the state’s Medicaid expansion program, Arkansas Works. This program uses Medicaid funds to enroll eligible adults in a private insurance plan at little or no cost to them.  It has also helped hospitals and doctors who were treating patients that were unable to pay for care.

  • What is your position on providing affordable coverage to adults who are low-income earners?
  • Now that a work requirement is being enforced, what job-training and educational resources do you think the state should provide?

Please press these issues and make sure that the people you vote for will work for you!  Submit more questions!

Pulaski County Nonpartisan Candidate Forum

This resource is from Arkansas Advocates for Children & Families

Join Coalition of Little Rock Neighborhoods, League of Women Voters of Pulaski County, Arkansas Community Organizations, Citizens First Congress, and Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families for a nonpartisan candidate forum on April 28th to find out where candidates stand on the issues most important to you. Audience members will have the opportunity to submit questions for the candidates at the event.

When: 1-5 p.m., Saturday, April 28
Where: M.L. Harris Auditorium at Philander Smith College,
900 Daisy Bates Drive, Little Rock, Arkansas 72202

Confirmed races:
-State Senate District 30
Senator Linda Chesterfield
Andre Pendleton

-State House District 33
Tippi McCullough
Ross Noland

-State House District 36
Representative Charles Blake
Darrell Stevens

Don’t know your district? Find out here. Just click the search button and type in your address.

Stay connected for updates, including additional races that may be included.

Don’t forget our guide to questions you might want to ask!