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Doctors, nurses ask NC lawmakers to grow Medicaid

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 11, 2013 at 7:12 pm •  Published: February 11, 2013

Tuesday's version of the Senate bill will be amended to address concerns from Republican Gov. Pat McCrory, said Rep. Justin Burr, R-Stanly, who filed an identical bill in the House. McCrory supports the concept of declining to expand Medicaid right now and to start a state-based exchange in 2014, an administration official said last week.

Burr said the House version of the bill could be on the chamber floor for debate later this week.

Surgeon and first-term Rep. Jim Fulghum, R-Wake, a brain surgeon, said Monday after the news conference he doesn't know yet how he'll vote on the measure and wants more information about exactly how much it may cost the state. The state is still expected to be required to spend cumulatively hundreds of millions of dollars on the expansion through the end of the decade. He watched the news conference and said he didn't like the tone of some speakers.

"I didn't hear a willingness to hear anybody else's point of view," he said.

Van der Horst criticized the contents of an online petition by Senate leader Phil Berger, R-Rockingham, urging supporters to sign up to "Stop Obamacare in North Carolina," saying they were misleading.

Berger spokesman Ray Martin said the petition information is "completely accurate" and accused a professor such as van der Horst of pushing "a misleading and partisan political agenda."

"It is not surprising to me that some of those folks would react or overreact to any statements that are made that criticize Obamacare," Berger told WRAL-TV on Monday evening.