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Medicaid expansion panel eyes worker shortages, hospitals

North Carolina General Assembly

A new study panel that could serve as the glidepath for the North Carolina General Assembly to accept broad Medicaid expansion has met for the first time. Friday's meeting of the legislative panel looked at medical worker shortages and rural hospital closings in addition to what Medicaid expansion could address. North Carolina is among 12 states that haven’t expanded Medicaid. Committee co-chairman Rep. Donny Lambeth says he's hopeful that a package of legislation could be voted on in September and October by the full General Assembly. While support among House Republicans for expansion remains cool, the idea has gained backing from Republican Senate leader Phil Berger.