Some states propose compact to give them free hand in running health care programs

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Kansas, Missouri and seven other states have signed on to a movement that would wrest regulation of most of the nation’s health care insurance systems from the federal government. Those state legislatures want to be part of a proposed interstate Health Care Compact. The compact would let participating states use federal funds — in the form of block grants — to design and operate their own Medicare, Medicaid and other health care programs, except the military’s. Critics say the idea is unworkable and faces long political odds. Indeed, states need Congress to approve any interstate compact. But the movement has some traction, partly to air grievances with Obamacare and partly because of supporters’ belief that states individually would do a better job managing health programs and expenses.

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Written by DIANE STAFFORD for THE KANSAS CITY STAR

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