Iowa Senate News Release
For Immediate Release: 9/5/19
Statement from Senate Democratic Leader Janet Petersen on appointment of Kelly Kennedy Garcia to Iowa DHS Director
Iowans need a leader at the Department of Human Services who will stand up for people instead of for-profit companies.
Apparently Governor Reynolds shared her ‘ambitious goals’ for serving Iowa’s most vulnerable populations with newly appointed director Kelly Kennedy Garcia.
It is time for Governor Reynolds to also share those goals with Iowans. The Reynolds Administration has been working behind closed doors on a ‘new direction’ for the department for nearly a year. Yet Governor Reynolds has continued to keep Iowans in the dark about what to expect.
Like most Iowans, Senate Democrats are hopeful the new Iowa DHS director will have the courage to help Governor Reynolds fundamentally change course. Her to-do list should start with:
1) Fixing Iowa’s privatized Medicaid system, a failure that is unsustainable, unaffordable and unaccountable.
2) Reversing the policies that destroyed Iowa’s once successful family planning network. The result has been more unintended pregnancies, more risky births, and more teenage mothers.
3) Addressing Iowa’s maternal health crisis which has more than doubled maternal mortality in less than three years. Reynolds Administration policies have contributed to making Iowa a more dangerous place to have a baby.
4) Establishing a comprehensive, adequate source of funding for child and adult mental health services.
5) Ending dangerous practices and procedures in use at Glenwood, Eldora and other state-operated facilities.
6) Rebuilding Iowa’s child protective safety net by mending the holes that have resulted in abuse and death.
The Reynolds Administration does not have a good record on helping Iowa families. Senate Democrats hope the Garcia appointment signals real change rather than more failure. Iowans deserve better.
Iowa Senate News Release
For Immediate Release: July 10, 2019
Statement from Senate Democratic Leader Janet Petersen on outrageous new contracts for privatized Medicaid
“The outrageous contracts with two out-of-state corporations are more evidence that privatized Medicaid in Iowa is unsustainable, unaffordable and unpredictable.
“Governor Reynolds has once again agreed to give the MCOs the largest dollar increases for Medicaid in the last decade. The publicly managed Medicaid system grew at an average of 5% each year over a 10-year period before privatization. Last year, the increase was 8.4%. The increase announced today is a whopping 8.6%!
“Just imagine how much better off Iowans would be if K12 public schools, job training programs and family planning services received that kind of increased state support!
“The big cheerleaders for privatized Medicaid – Governor Reynolds and Republican legislators –cannot back up their claims that privatizing would save money and make people healthier. That’s because it hasn’t happened.
“Privatized Medicaid continues to be a bad, bad deal for Iowa Medicaid recipients, health care providers and taxpayers.”
- end –