Listen now: Medicaid expansion is official; child immunization loophole

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Hundreds of thousands of people now are insured through the state’s Medicaid program.

The change officially comes months after Governor Tom Wolf authorized expansion of the program under the Affordable Care Act.

It also means that former Governor Tom Corbett’s Healthy Pennsylvania plan no longer exists.

All of this doesn’t come without questions – where will newly-insured people get health care? How much will this cost the state? How will the state reach those who still haven’t signed up for the expanded Medicaid program?

This epside of Smart Talk features Department of Human Services Secretary Ted Dallas, and Erin Ninehouser of the Pennsylvania Health Access Network.

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Ted Dallas, Department of Human Services Secretary.

Plus, Pennsylvania requires children get vaccinated if they go to public schools – but a loophole allows parents to put off the shots for as long as eight months.

By that time, the academic year is practically ending, and the peak season for many illnesses has passed.

Eric Holmberg of the nonprofit journalism outlet PublicSource joins me to discuss what he found.